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THE INTELLIGENCE OF 
SCHOOL CHILDREN 

HOW CHILDREN DIFFER IN ABILITY 

THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS IN SCHOOL GRADING 

AND THE PROPER EDUCATION OF 

EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN 

BY 

LEWIS M. TERMAN 

PROFESSOR OF 'EDUCATION 

LHLAND STANFORD JUNIOR UNIVERSITY 




HOUGHTON MIFFLJN COMPANY 

BOSTON NEW YORK CHICAGO 

G$e Ktitaeribe f&ce&l Cambribge 



TO MY GRADUATE STDDENTS 
1916-1917 AND 1917-1918 



EDITOR'S INTRODUCTION 

THREE years ago the author of the present volume 
published, in this series, The Measurement of Intelli- 
gence. This represented a number of years of care- 
ful scientific work, on the part of himself and his stu- 
dents, in testing out and adapting to American needs 
and conditions the very important foundation work 
of the French scholar Binet. It was predicted at the 
time that the volume would prove of fundamental 
importance in pointing the way to more intelligent 
school room procedure, and that in time the mental 
measurement of all children not maln'rig satisfactory 
educational progress would become a matter of rou- 
tine in the administration of a school 

The reception given to the volume, not only in this 
country but in Canada and England as well, has ex- 
ceeded expectations. With the entry of the United 
States into the World War, and the application of 
intelligence testing to our army recruits as a means of 
grading capacity 'and sorting them for the serious busi- 
ness of war, an entirely new impetus has been given to 
intelligence measurements. As a result of the work 
done in the army, as much progress has been made 
during the past three years in the use of intelligence 
tests as ordinarily might have been expected in a 
decade. 



viii EDITOR'S INTRODUCTION 

In consequence, the large usefulness of intelligence 
testing has beten thoroughly demonstrated, and as a 
result the near future is almost certain to see the 
method applied somewhat generally in schoolroom 
practice to determine mental capacity and effect 
proper grade classification. Intelligence testing is also 
certain to play an important part in educational and 
vocational guidance. The question now is not. Are 
intelligence tests of value? but, How may teachers and 
principals be made masters of their use? To those 
responsible for the administration of both public and 
private education the question has become, What 
modifications of educational procedure will be neces- 
sary in consequence of the new light on mental devel- 
opment and school work which intelligence measure- 
ments have revealed? The questions of promotions, 
proper grading, types of courses of study, the skipping 
of grades, over-age children, juvenile delinquency, 
vocational guidance, special classes, and the proper 
education of gifted and sub-normal children have all 
acquired an entirely new meaning in the light of the 
results which the measurement of intelligence has 
already produced. 

In TheMeaswementcflnteMigencetihe author reduced 
the tests and the procedure for giving them to simple 
language, so that from a study of the book any careful 
student could be trained to give them. In the present 
volume he has done an even more significant thing, 
viewed either from the point of view of the teacher in 



EDITOR'S INTRODUCTION k 

our schools or from that of the principal or superintend- 
ent responsible for their administration. In this book 
he has set forth in equally simple language, backed 
up by the results of a number of concrete studies, and 
illustrated by curves, tables, and descriptions of many 
individual pupils who have been tested and studied 
the educational significance of intelligence, the great 
differences in the intelligence of school children, and 
what may be expected from and what ought to be done 
for pupils of different degrees of intellectual capacity. 

The book has been written primarily for the grade 
teacher, and as an introduction to the study of The 
Measurement of Intelligence. Its greatest usefulness 
probably will be as a book for Teacher Study Clubs 
and State Reading Circles, and as an introductory 
textbook for students in normal schools. A careful 
study of this book by the teachers of a city or State 
would contribute wonderfully to the intelligent han- 
dling of children, and the study of it by prospective 
teachers would open up entirely new conceptions as to 
educational procedure, and would lead to a far more 
satisfactory direction of the exceptional children found 
in every school. The book will also prove of much 
value to parents interested in the education of their 
children, and especially to those whose children vary 
much in either direction from the normal. 

While written primarily for the teacher in service and 
for parents interested in the mental development of 
their children, the book ought also to prove illtiminat- 



x EDITOR'S INTRODUCTION 

ing to principals and superintendents of schools gen- 
erally, by way of suggesting to them more intelligent 
educational procedure in the classification and promo- 
tion of children and the administration of courses of 
study. 

ELLWOOD P. CUBBEHLEY 



PREFACE 

THIS book lias been written for the rank and file of 
teachers, school supervisors, and normal-school stu- 
dents. Its purpose is to illustrate the large individual 
differences in original endowment which exist among 
school children and to show the practical bearing of 
these differences upon the everyday problems of class- 
room management and school administration. It does 
not treat, except incidentally, the psychological prin- 
ciples underlying intelligence tests. Some of these 
problems the writer has touched upon elsewhere. 1 
The technique of giving the tests of the revised Binet 
scale and the general significance of mental tests for 
education have been set forth in some detail in another 
volume of this series, The Measurement of Intelligence,* 
which should be read in connection with the present 
volume. 

In the preparation of this volume the writer has 
drawn heavily upon the data from investigations made 
by a number of his students at Stanford University. 
His debt to them is very great, not only for the gener- 
ous way in which they have placed valuable data at 
his disposal, but if possible even more for the loyalty 

1 See Tennan, Lewis M., The Stamford Revision and Extension of 
the Binet-Simon Measuring Scale of Intelligence. Warwick and York, 
Baltimore, 1917; pp. 179. 

1 Houghton Mifflin Company, 1916; pp, 862. 



xii PREFACE 

and enthusiasm with which they have worked to- 
gether in carrying through cooperative undertakings 
of the most laborious nature. What a single individual 
working alone can accomplish in research with mental 
tests is well-nigh infinitesimal. Substantial progress 
can come only from the cooperative work of many 
on closely allied problems. This volume is in large 
measure the outcome of studies made by various mem- 
bers of the author's classes in intelligence tests during 
the years 1916-17 and 1917-18, the central topic for 
each year being the relation of school success to intel- 
ligence* Students who have contributed important 
data to the various chapters include the following: 
Virgil E. Dickson (tests of first-grade pupils); 
W. M. Proctor (tests of high-school pupils); 
Irene Cuneo (tests of kindergarten children); 
Margaret Hopwood Hubbard (tests of superior 

children); 

O. S. Hubbard (tests of fifth-grade pupils); 
Isabel Preston (analysis of discrepancies between 

mental age and school success); 
J. K. Flanders (tests of Express Company employ- 
ees); 
H. E. Knollin (tests of unemployed, prisoners, and 

businessmen); 

Dr. J. Harold Williams (tests of juvenile delin- 
quents); 

Lowery Howard and "Virgil Dickson (tests of re- 
tarded children in the schools of "X** County); 



PREFACE 



xui 



Various students who coSperated in gathering the 
data on which the Stanford Revision of the Binet 
. scale was based. Among these were Dr. George 
Ordahl, Dr. Louise Ellison Ordahl, Grace Lyman, 
Neva Galbreath, and Wilf ord Talbert. 
These studies are but parts of a larger investigation 
of mental growth and individual differences. Several 
of them are far from complete at the time of this writ- 
ing. Hundreds of children who have been tested in 
the vicinity of Stanford University are being followed 
up in order to discover the value of mental tests as a 
means of forecasting the educational achievements 
possible to children of various degrees of intelligence. 
The investigation also involves the re-testing of a large 
number of children in successive or alternate years in 
order that typical curves of mental growth may be 
established. The writer believes that studies of this 
kind should entirely replace the controversial litera- 
ture on the value of Binet and other mental tests. 
There is no other foundation for science, whether pure 
or applied, than positive, definitely verifiable facts. 
Psychology is no exception. 

Another study should be mentioned in this connec- 
tion, although circumstances prevent the publication 
of its results at present. With the assistance of a 
number of Stanford University students, the group 
intelligence scale devised for use in the United States 
Army was given during the school year of 1917-18 
to approximately six thousand pupils from the third 



xhr PREFACE 

grade to the senior year of high school. The purpose 
of the investigation was to secure data on the reli- 
ability of the army tests, and to this end a large 
amount of supplementary information regarding each 
pupil was secured for correlation with the tests re- 
sults. This information included age, grade, years in 
school, nationality of parents, occupation of father, 
teachers' ratings of the children on intelligence, qual- 
ity of school work, and several character traits. Ap- 
proximately six hundred of the same pupils had been 
tested with the Stanford Revision of the Binet scale. 
In every respect the results of this investigation sup- 
port the data and conclusions presented in the vari- 
ous chapters of this volume. The army tests, which 
were given to approximately 1,700,000 soldiers, demon- 
strated beyond question that the methods of mental 
measurement are capable of making a contribution of 
great value to military efficiency. That their univer- 
sal use in the schoolroom is necessary to educational 
efficiency will doubtless soon be accepted as a matter 
of course. 

The fact that the conclusions here offered are based 
chiefly upon results secured by the use of the Stanford 
Revision of the Binet-Simon tests must not be under- 
stood to imply that the writer looks with disfavor upon 
other intelligence scales. To the extent that the con- 
clusions are valid at all, they can be confirmed by any 
system of tests which affords a reasonably accurate 
measure of general mental ability. However, it is not 



PBJEFACE xv 

the purpose of this volume to summarize the hundreds 
of interesting and valuable investigations which have 
utilized either Binet or other tests of school children. 
For the most part such investigations have been di- 
rected toward the improvements of methods. The 
writer's present **i is the more practical one of show- 
ing how the results of mental tests may be put to 
everyday use hi the grade classification and in the 
educational guidance of school children. 

The author is indebted to Professor R. M. Yerkes 
for reading several chapters of the manuscript and 
for many helpful criticisms. 



SXANFOBD UN 

March 1, 1919 , 



CONTENTS 

I. SOME PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING . . 1 

The Binet tests, a method of assaying intelligence 
Why a mental test is significant The meaning of mental 
age Mental age a basis for school grading The intel- 
ligence quotient The I Q as a basis for prediction 
Effect of environment on the I Q Scales for group testing. 

II. AMOUNT AND SIGNIFICANCE OF INDIVIDUAL DIFFER- 

ENCES 17 

Individual differences exist for all traits The causes 
of individual differences in school progress Overlapping 
of mental ages in the different grades The tendency to 
promote by age. 

IH. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG KINDERGARTEN 

CHILDREN 30 

Range in mental age Distribution of I Q's Sex dif- 
ferences Significance of the tests Special need of 
tests in the kindergarten The kindergarten's demands 
upon intelligence. 

IV. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIRST GRADE . 4 

The critical importance of the first grade A model 
study of school grading Mental-age differences Men- 
tal age necessary for first-grade work The influence of 
age on the ability to do school work The distribution of 
I Q's How the five classes differed Sex differences 
Racial and social differences Correlation between intel- 
ligence and other traits Predictions regarding school 
progress The retarded group Feasibility of testing 
all first-grade children. 

V. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIFTH GRADE . 66 

Extent of the differences The two classes contrasted 
Necessity of an absolute standard of comparison The 



xviii CONTENTS 

intelligence tests confirmed by other data Betardation 
and acceleration. 

VI. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIRST YEAR OF 

HIGH SCHOOL 75 

Age differences Mental age differences Mental age 
and school marks IQ and chronological age IQ 
and school work IQ and teachers' estimates of in- 
telligence The relation of intelligence to elimination 
Other evidence that elimination is selective Are high- 
school standards too high? 

VIC. THE MENTAL-AGE STANDAED FOR GRADING . . 92 

Normal mental age for the different grades Sources of 
error in judging school success Discrepancies between 
mental age and school performance Effect of unusual 
application Effect of child's personality on the teacher's 
ratings Effect of timidity and lack of self-confidence 
Effect of mental inertia Effects of emotional instability 
or nervous tendencies Effect of home "spoiling" 
Influence of physical defects Love affairs and day- 
dreaming Summary The case of Margaret. 

VnL MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS . . . Ill 

The number of over-age children The supposed causes 
of retardation The real cause of retardation Feeble- 
minded school children Grade progress of the feeble- 
minded Some exceptionally difficult classes How many 
children are feeble-minded? Criteria of mental deficiency 
Feeble-mindedness and dullness not curable Grade 
expectancy of the feeble-minded Limitations of the 
special class Vocational training for backward children. 

IX. THE I Q AS A BASTS FOR PREDICTION .... 135 

Prediction the essence of science Limitations of pre- 
diction in psychology Constancy of I Q as shown by re- 
tests Personal equation of the examiner Influence of 
interval between tests Influence of brightness and dull- 
ness on the constancy of the I Q limits of accuracy hi 
prediction of mental development Mechanical errors 
as a source of discrepancy Do adenoids affect the I Q? 
Curves of mental growth The I Q as a basis for pre- 
dicting school progress. 



CONTENTS ax 

X. SOME FACTS ABOUT FIFTY-NINE SUPERIOR CHIL- 

DREN 165 

Educational neglect of superior children Selection 
of subjects Supplementary data I Q's Age-grade 
location Teachers' ratings on quality of school work 
^Educational measurements Entering age and rate 
of advancement Age of learning to read Attitude 
toward school work Play and recreation Trait rat- 
ings Moral traits Health and physical traits So- 
cial status and heredity Does the superiority tend to 
disappear? Conclusions. 

XI. CASE STUDIES OF FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 194 

Descriptions of forty-one children of superior intel- 
lectual ability Indications of superior endowment 
Objections to grading superior children by mental age 
Opportunity classes for superior children Class section- 
ing according to mental ability. 

XII. INTELLIGENCE TESTS IN VOCATIONAL AND EDUCA- 

TIONAL GUIDANCE 268 

Educational and vocational guidance inseparable 
Limitations of vocational guidance Firemen and police- 
men Express company employees Street-car em- 
' ployees and salesgirls Business men Tests of college 
students Tests of social and industrial failures Edu- 
cational guidance The conservation of talent. 

TCm. PRACTICAL SUGGESTIONS FOR THE USE OF MEN- 
TAL TESTS 291 

Teachers must learn to use tests Preparation needed 
for Binet testing How to learn the Binet procedure 
without instruction Learning to score The interpre- 
tation and use of results The use of supplementary 
data The Providence example The use of abbreviated 
tests The vocabulary test as a brief intelligence scale 
Group tests. 

INDEX 815 



MST OP FIGURES 

1. Individual differences among 145 first-grade chil- 
dren in sense of humor 18 

2. Individual differences among 145 first-grade chil- 
dren in cheerfulness 18 

3. Individual differences among 145 first-grade chil- 
dren in evenness of temper . 19 

4. Individual differences among 508 children in quality 

of school work Id 

5. Individual differences among 892 children in ability 

to give sustained attention 20 

6. Individual differences in height among 286 boys, 
aged" 9* to 10* years 22 

7. Individual differences among 1896 ten-year-old boys 

in ability to win promotions in school ... 22 

8. Individual differences among 88 unselected twelve- 
year-old children in I Q as measured by the Stan- 
ford-Binet Scale 28 

9. Individual differences in intelligence among 1458 
children, Grades V to VJJUL, as shown by teachers' 
ratings 28 

10. Overlapping in the mental ages of children in the 
first, fifth, and ninth grades 25 

1 1. Overlapping of kindergarten and first-grade children 

in mental age 81 

12. I Q distribution of 112 kindergarten children . . 84 
18. Mental age distribution of 149 first-grade children 45 

14. I Q distribution of 149 first-grade children . . 50 

15. Typical "trait profile" of a very bright child . 59 

16. Typical "trait profile" of a child of average intelli- 
gence 59 



xxii LIST OF FIGURES 

17. Topical "trait profile" of a feeble-minded child . 59 

18. Mental-age distribution of 137 first-year high- 
school pupils 78 

19. I Q distribution of first-year high-school pupils . 81 

20. Mental-growth curves as they would be if I Q were 
constant 152 

21. Actual mental-growth curves of children of various 
degrees of brightness 15$ 

22. Mental-growth curves of bright and dull children . 154 

23. Mental-growth curves in two contrasting families . 155 

24. Mental-growth contrasts hi the same family . . 156 

25. Four exceptionally irregular growth curves , 157 



THE INTELLIGENCE OF 
SCHOOL CHILDREN 

CHAPTER I 

SOME PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING* 

The Binet tests, a method of assaying intelligence. 
In order to find out how much gold is contained in a 
given vein of quartz it is not necessary to uncover all 
the ore and extract and weigh every particle of the 
precious metal. It is sufficient merely to ascertain by 
borings the linear extent of the lode and to take a 
small amount of the ore to the laboratory of an assayer, 
who will make a test and render a verdict of so many 
ounces of gold per ton of ore. 

A half -century ago Francis Galton predicted that it 
would sometime be possible to obtain a general knowl- 
edge of the intellectual capacities of a man by sinking 
shafts, as it were, at a few critical points.- Already 
Galton's dream is in process of realization, for in the 
last decade mental testing has become one of the most 
fruitful branches of psychological science. The credit 
for pointing the way belongs largely to the French 
psychologist, Alfred Binet, who, after more than fif- 

1 For a more extended discussion of the principles of mental 
testing, including detailed instructions for the use of the Stanford 
Revision of the Binet-Simon Intelligence Scale, see Terman, Lewis 
M., The Measurement of Intelligence. Houghton TVTifflin Company. 
1916; pp. 862. 



2 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

teen years of patient research, gave to the world in 
1908 the system of mental tests now known as the 
Binet-Simon Intelligence Scale. In various revised 
forms the method has come into general use in public 
schools, institutions for defectives, prisons, reform 
schools, and juvenile courts in the United States 
and in Europe. Our debt to Binet is very great, for 
he succeeded in bringing psychology down from the 
clouds and making it useful to men. 

The Binet scale is made up of an extended series of 
tests in the nature of problems, success in which de- 
mands the exercise of the intellectual processes. As 
left by Binet, the scale consisted of fifty-four tests, 
ranging in difficulty from tests which are passed by the 
average child of three years, to tests which are difficult 
enough for the average adult. The Stanford Revision 
has increased the number of tests to ninety and has 
extended the scale far enough to measure the intelli- 
gence of superior adults. 

The ninety teats in the revised scale constitute an 
extremely variegated series. This is necessary, since 
their purpose is to measure the subject's general intel- 
ligence, not his special ability in a particular line. They 
include tests of memory, language comprehension, 
size of vocabulary, orientation in time and space, eye- 
hand coordinations, knowledge about familiar things, 
judgment, ability to find likenesses and differences 
between common objects, arithmetical reasoning, re- 
sourcefulness and ingenuity in difficult practical situ- 



PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING 3 

ations, ability to detect absurdities, apperception, the 
speed and richness of association of ideas, the power to 
combine the dissected parts of a form board or a group 
of ideas into a unitary whole, the capacity to generalize 
from particulars, the ability to deduce a rule from con- 
nected facts, etc. Thus the tests give a kind of com- 
posite picture of the subject's general mental ability, 
and since standards of comparison have been estab- 
lished for each of the individual tests by trying it out 
on hundreds of unselected normal children of all ages, 
it is possible to express the total result of an examina- 
tion in terms of "mental age" norms. 

Why a mental test is significant Are we justified 
in attributing real diagnostic significance to the little 
intellectual "stunts" called for by an intelligence 
scale? Some of these may even appear trivial. What 
does it signify, for example, whether a given ten-year* 
old subject names forty words or a hundred words in 
three minutes? Whether he puts together the parts 
of a form board in thirty seconds or in two minutes? 
Whether he defines thirty words or sixty words ttf 
a hundred-word list? Whether his definitions of 
words are stated in terms of "use" or in terms "su- 
perior to use "? Whether a series of five digits or only 
a series of three digits can be repeated backwards 
after a single auditory presentation? Whether there 
are three, two, one, or no successes in the attempt to 
draw a diamond-shaped figure from copy? 

The secret lies in the standardization of the tests 



4 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

upon normal children of different ages. Without such 
a standardization the tests would mean nothing. 
Standardization is coming to play the same r61e in 
psychology that it has long played in the various 
branches of applied science. The architect or bridge 
engineer plans his structure with constant reference 
to foot-pounds of strain which various materials will 
withstand. The physician analyzes a drop of blood 
and, by comparison of corpuscle count and haemo- 
globin with the norms for health and disease, is able 
to render an important diagnosis. The psychologist 
working with mental tests may be compared with the 
palaeontologist who finds in a gravel bed of some 
prehistoric age a skull cap, a fragment of jaw, and 
a broken humerus. Although the layman might not 
even recognize the human origin of such remnants, the 
palaeontologist is able to tell us that the bones are 
those of a middle-aged male, that the species to which 
he belonged had not yet learned to stand erect, that 
he probably did not know the use of fire (worn, teeth 
indicate that he subsisted on uncooked foods), that his 
intelligence was inferior (cranial contents only two 
thirds that of modern man), and that he had prob- 
ably evolved but limited power of speech (diminutive 
points of attachment for the speech muscles) . A little 
technical acquaintance with the standards of shape, 
size, and structure of human bones has transformed 
the meaningless fragments into a "missing link" 
Homo neanderihalensis. 



PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING 5 

Perhaps no two things could be more alike to casual 
inspection than the balls of two thumbs; yet one who 
has been taught to read finger prints can ordinarily 
find from forty to seventy separate and individually 
sufficient points of identification. Just as many a 
man has been hanged on the evidence of his finger 
prints, so many an individual might safely be com- 
mitted to an institution for the feeble-minded on the 
evidence of ten or a dozen intelligence tests which 
have been standardized according to age norms. 

The meaning of mental age. Both the individual 
tests of the Binet scale and the scale as a whole have 
been standardized on the basis of age norms. The 
tests themselves are located in age groups in such a 
way as to bring it about that the average child of eight 
years will earn by the scale a "mental age" of eight 
years, the average twelve-year-old a "mental age" of 
twelve years, etc. Such an arrangement was arrived 
at empirically by trying out a series of tests upon hun- 
dreds of normal children of different ages. The Stan- 
ford Revision, for example, was based on tests of 1700 
children and 400 adults. 

To illustrate the use of the scale, let us suppose we 
are testing a child of eight years. If our subject passes 
successfully as far as the average child of eight years, 
we say that his mental age is eight years, or in this 
case normal. If he goes as far as the average ten-year- 
old, we say that he has a mental age of ten years. If 
he earns no more credit than the average six-year-old, 



<j BSTTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

his mental age is six years. Binet merely took a 
standard of comparison which every one uses (namely, 
the standard of age) and made it definite by finding 
out what intellectual performances representative chil- 
dren of different ages are capable of. 

It is necessary that the reader should at the outset 
arrive at a correct understanding of what the term 
"mental age 9 ' is and is not intended to signify. Two 
misconceptions are to be avoided: 

1. That each "mental age' 9 is a separate and quali- 
tatively distinct level of mental attainment, contrast- 
ing markedly with both the mental age which precedes 
it and that which follows it. Such a use of the term is 
not in harmony with the facts. Mental development 
is consecutive and gradual. There is probably no 
mental power, capacity, or function which has a 
Minerva birth, The "faculty" in question develops 
first in rudimentary form, then grows gradually 
stronger and more definite until, by imperceptible 
stages, it reaches a state of maturity. 

2. Another misunderstanding comes from the as- 
sumption that those who use the term believe a given 
mental age is a stage of development which all normal 
individuals pass through at the corresponding actual 
age. Such a belief would imply that at the age of ten 
years, for example, all children who do not belong to 
some special type (defective, genius, etc.) should be 
found at the ten-year mental age, eight-year children 
at the eight-year mental age, etc. It is one of the 



PRINCIPLES OP INTELLIGENCE TESTING 7 

main purposes of this book to show how widely chil- 
dren of a given age differ in mental age, and how 
greatly children of adjacent ages overlap each other 
in mental age. 

The real meaning of the term is perfectly straight- 
forward and unambiguous. By a given mental age 
we mean that degree of general mental ability which is 
possessed by the average child of corresponding chrono- 
logical age. 

Mental age a basis for school grading. The signifi- 
cance of mental age for the teacher lies in the fact that 
it can be used as a basis for grading the pupils so as 
to secure class groups of homogeneous ability. As 
will be shown in succeeding chapters, the pupils of 
given grades, or even the pupils of one grade in a single 
classroom, are far from equal in general intelligence 
or in ability to master the school work. Generally 
speaking, not far from a fourth of the pupils in any 
given grade have a mental level too low to make satis- 
factory work in that grade possible, while another 
fourth have reached a mental level which would enable 
them to succeed in a higher grade. 

The intelligence quotient. The mental age merely 
indicates the level of development which a child has 
reached at a given time. Considered apart from 
chronological age it does not tell us whether a child 
is bright, dull, or average. Of three children all test- 
ing at the mental age of eight years, one might very 
well be exceptionally superior, one average, and one 



3 UNiJbiJLJULliJiiJNCJifl Utf SCHOOL CHILDREN 

feeble-minded. Such would be the case if their chron- 
ological ages were six, eight, and twelve years. In 
addition to an index of absolute mental level, we need 
an index of relative brightness. Such is the intelli- 
gence quotient (I Q), which is the ratio of mental age 
to chronological age. The six-year-old of eight-year 
mental age has an I Q of 8/6 or 133 ; l the twelve-year- 
old with a mental age of eight years, an I Q of 8/ 12, or 
67. In computing the I Q of an adult subject, years 
of chronological age in excess of sixteen are disre- 
garded, as the development of native intelligence 
seems practically to cease not far from this age. 

An idea of how greatly school children differ in 
brightness is shown by the analysis of the I Q's of 1000 
representative children in which it was found that: 2 

The lowest 1% go to 70 or below, the highest 1% reach ISO or above 



44 44 44 



2% " 73' 

3% " " 70 * 

5% - - 78 

10% - 85 " ' w - 10% 

15% * " 88 " " " " 15% 

20% - 91 - * " * 20% 

25% * 92 - * " 25% 

SS% * " 95 M 83% 



128* 
125* 

12** 
116 " 
113* 
110* 
108* 
106* 



The intelligence quotient a basis for prediction, 
ust as mental age indicates the school grade in which 
, child normally belongs at a given time, so the I Q is 
he basis for prediction in regard to the child's later 
aental development. The possibility of such pretlic- 

1 More correctly, 1.33; but the decimal point is customarily 
oaitted, the quotient being understood as expressed in p<*r cent. 

2 Terman, Lewis M., The Measurement of Intelligence, Uoughton 
rifflin Company, 1016. See chapter v. 



PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING 9 

tion comes from the fact that the I Q has been found 
in the large majority of cases to remain fairly constant, 
at least for the ages between three or four and four- 
teen or fif teen. For illustration, we will take the case 
of a four-year-old child who is found to have a mental 
age of five years, and whose I Q is therefore 125. The 
probability is that this child will continue to have a 
mental age not far from 25 per cent above his chrono- 
logical age, with the consequences which may be ex- 
pressed as follows: 

Chronological Probable Probable school 

age mental age ability 

4 years 5 years Upper kindergarten . 

6 " 7| " Second school grade 

8 " 10 " High fourth grade 

10 " 12J " Low seventh grade 

12 " 15 " First year high school 

It would, of course, be absurd to expect the I Q 
to maintain itself at an absolutely constant figure. 
Fluctuations occur for at least three reasons: (1) There 
may be in exceptional cases a certain amount of irregu- 
larity in the actual rate of mental development. 
(8) The results of a test may be influenced to some 
extent by the conditions under which it is given, the 
state of the child's health, his attitude toward the 
test, fatigue, and other temporary or accidental fac- 
tors. Re-tests after a brief interval indicate that 
errors from this source are ordinarily not large. 
(3) There is inevitably a certain amount of error in 
every I Q rating, due to imperfections in the scale 



10 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

used. If the scale has been so standardized that it 
yields mental ages which are too low, the I Q found 
will be too low; if the scale errs in the direction of being 
too generous, the resulting I Q will be too high. A 
scale may err in one direction at one level and in the 
opposite direction at another level. It was the most 
serious fault of the original Binet scale that in the 
lower range of tests it yielded mental ages which were 
too high, and in the upper range mental ages which 
were too low. The effect of such errors is greatly to 
exaggerate the amount of fluctuation to which mental 
growth is subject. It was the main purpose of the 
Stanford Revision to reduce these constant errors. 
Chapter XI shows in detail the degree of constancy 
which may be expected for the I Q when the Stanford 
Revision is used. While the law of constancy is sub- 
ject to minor revisions, few things are more certain 
than the essential untruth of the widespread belief 
that mental development knows no regularity, and 
that the dullard of to-day becomes the genius of to- 
morrow. The fact is that, apart from minor fluctua- 
tions due to temporary factors, and apart from oc- 
casional instances of arrest or deterioration due to 
acquired nervous disease, the feeble-minded remain 
feeble-minded, the dull remain dull, the average re- 
main average, and the superior remain superior. 
There is nothing in one's equipment, with the excep- 
tion of character, which rivals the I Q in importance. 
Effect of environment on the I Q. The question is 



PRINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING 11 

always raised whether, in estimating a child's intelli- 
gence on the basis of the I Q, it is not necessary to 
make allowance for the influence of social environ- 
ment. For example, it is often argued that the child 
cannot know his age if he has never heard it, cannot 
read and report the memory passages if he has never 
attended school, cannot count from ^0 to 1 if he has 
never been taught to count from 1 to 20, cannot name 
the days of the week or the months of the year unless 
he has heard others name them, and that therefore 
the I Q can have little significance except possibly 
as an index of the subject's social and educational 
environment. 

It is, of course, true that an individual who for his 
entire life had been entirely deprived of human en- 
vironment (assuming such a thing to be possible) 
could not pass a satisfactory Binet test, however nor- 
mal his original endowment may have been. To use 
an extreme illustration, a child of ten years who had 
been reared in a cage, whose wants had been supplied 
while he was asleep, or by means of ingenious mechan- 
ical contrivances, who had never seen a human being, 
could hardly be expected to make a brilliant showing 
in defining words in the vocabulary test, detecting 
absurdities, repeating sentences, reading the Binet 
passage, answering comprehension questions, or nam- 
ing sixty words. We may go further and assume that 
such a subject would be as little successful with the 
three-year as with the ten-year test. 



12 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHTLDBEN 

Needless to say, the Binet scale was not intended for 
subjects of the type we have just described. Its use 
in a given case takes for granted that the ordinary and 
all but inevitable social contacts have been made, that 
the subject is not deaf or blind, and that he has had 
reasonable opportunity to learn the language in which 
the tests are given. Children who have attended 
school for any considerable time meet all of these 
requirements, whatever the social status of the home. 

As a matter of fact, limited acquaintance with the 
language employed in the examination does not put 
the subject at great disadvantage in many of the tests. 
In some it does, and in testing subjects who are under 
this handicap the vocabulary test and a few others 
may very well be omitted. Following are two illus- 
trations which show that the validity of the scale does 
not hinge entirely upon the subject's knowledge of 
English: 

1. Kohs tested a Belgian refugee child of nine years 
who had been in America but two years. Although 
this child's acquaintance with the English language 
was very limited, the I Q earned on the Stanford- 
Binet scale was 99. The child was also doing school 
work of average quality in the fourth grade. 

&. Dickson tested a Japanese boy, aged five years, 
two months, who had never attended school and who 
had had little opportunity to learn English; yet this 
boy earned a mental age of seven years and an I Q 
of 133. 



PBINCIPLES OF INTELLIGENCE TESTING IS 

That lack of schooling does not prevent a subject 
from earning an average or superior score in the test 
is shown by the cases of S. S. and Gypsy Mary. 

S. S. was tested at the age of seven years. He had 
never been to school, and although his home advan- 
tages were excellent, he had had no formal instruction 
and had never learned to read. The parents believed, 
perhaps rightly, that the important needs of child- 
hood, apart from simple moral instruction, are food, 
fresh air, and freedom for play. Nevertheless, S. 
earned a mental age of ten years, eight months, and 
an I Q of 153. 

In 1916 a gypsy girl of sixteen years was given the 
Stanf ord-Binet test in a clinic in Oakland, California. 
This girl had been stolen by the gypsies when she was 
about four years old, had lived with them continu- 
ously until a few days before the test was made, and 
had never attended a school. The I Q found was ap- 
proximately 100. 1 

It is not denied that the cultural status of the home 
(even apart from heredity) may affect the result of the 
test to some extent, although the influence has never 
been accurately determined. If it were considerable, 

1 TLe girl had run away from the gypsies and had told of being 
kidnaped by them when a child. The gypsies denied her story and 
stated that she was weak-minded and not responsible for what she 
said. The mental test was given to determine her competence. 
As a result of her testimony, she was freed from her gypsy parents 
and returned to her home State (Montana), where she was placed 
in school. Within a year she had completed the work of several 
grades and was ready to enter high school. 



14 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

we should find a marked rise of I Q in the ^ase of chil- 
dren who had been removed from au inferior to a sat- 
isfactory home environment. Our data on this point 
are not extensive, but of a dozen or more children of 
this kind whom we have re-tested, not one showed 
improvement. Two such children, Walter and Frank, 
have been under observation for several years. Until 
the ages of five and seven years they lived in an excep- 
tionally poor home. The mother was dull, the father 
illiterate and a drunkard. Both of the parents died 
within a year and the boys were adopted by a woman 
of decidedly more than average ability who treated 
them as her own sons. At the time of adoption one 
tested at 73, the other at 88. Pour years later the 
I Q's were 70 and 77. It is a general rule that children 
of border-line intelligence improve little if at all in I Q 
as they get older, notwithstanding their increased 
school experience and the extra attention they receive 
in special classes. 

That the environment of the home affects the result 
of the test but little is further shown by the fact that 
occasionally in a very inferior home all of the children 
except one test low, as would be expected, while that 
one tests exceptionally high. In one such family 
(Portuguese) there are three children who test between 
76 and 88, while a brother of these tests at 130. The 
latter is making a very superior record in high school, 
which he entered at the age of thirteen years. The 
others have not been able to complete the eighth 



PRINCIPLES OP INTELLIGENCE TESTING 15 

grade. All have had the same home environment and 
the same educational opportunities. 1 

Scales for group testing. To test each year the 
intelligence of all the children by the Binet method 
would involve a larger task than the school is likely 
to undertake. There is accordingly a wide field for 
tests which can be applied to an entire group, or class, 
at onoe. The various scales have been devised for this 
purpose. The group scales are given as written tests 
and can be applied to an entire class of fifty or more 
pupils in about an hour. To score the records requires 
about ten minutes for each pupil, or a total of about 
five or six hours for a class of average size. This can 
be done evenings or at odd times. Most group scales 
have the advantage of requiring little special psycho- 
logical training either for giving the tests or scoring 
them. An unfortunate limitation of such scales is that 
they are not satisfactory in the lower grades where the 
need for testing is greatest. As measures of intelli- 
gence they are probably somewhat less accurate than 
scales for individual testing, but their obvious advan- 
tages make them deserving of wide use with pupils 
of the upper grades and high school. 2 

However, no group scale will ever do away with the 
necessity of individual testing. Rather it mokes the 
need for individual testing more obvious. All the 

* The mental growth curves .of two of these children are shown in 
Fig. 24, p. 156. 

1 The Otis Group Tests and the instructions for using them are 
supplied by The World Book Company, Yonkers, New York. 



16 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

pupils in the fourth grade and beyond should be given 
a test by the group method every year, and those 
whose scores are either very high or very low in the 
group examination should be given a Binet test. As 
will be shown later (chapter IV), it is highly desirable 
that every pupil be given a mental test within the first 
half-year of his school life. 



CHAPTER H 

AMOUNT AND SIGNIFICANCE OF INDIVIDUAL 
DIFFERENCES 1 

Individual differences exist for all traits. When 
many unselected children of a given age are examined 
for any trait, large individual differences are found. 
This is true whether the trait in question is height, 
weight, strength, lung capacity, number of blood cor- 
puscles, hearing, vision, intelligence, courage, con- 
scientiousness, social adaptability, vanity, or any one 
of a hundred others. Figures 1 to 5 illustrate typical 
individual differences among school children in sense 
of humor, cheerfulness, evenness of temper, quality of 
school work, and ability to give sustained attention. 
The graphs show the per cent of pupils who were classi- 
fied by their teachers as "very inferior," "inferior," 
"average," "superior," or "very superior" in regard 
to each of the traits. 

The above graphs represent the distribution of 
teachers' ratings; that is, estimates based on personal 
observation of the pupils rated. Actual measurement 
of the traits would have been preferable to ratings, 
had such measurement been possible, but there arc 

1 For a more extended discussion of individual differences see 
E. L. Thorndike, Educational Psychology, vol. ni (1914), pp. 141- 
308. Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City. 



18 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 



Very Inferior 
7.6% 



Inferior 
24.8% 



Average 
44.8% 



Superior 
17.9% 



4.8% 



FIG. 1. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 145 FIRST-GRADE CHIL- 
DREN IN SENSE OF HUMOR. (Teachers' ratings.) 



Very inferior 
. 6.8% 



Inferior 
18.6% 



Average 
47.C% 



Superior 
21.4% 



Very superior 
5.0% 



FIG. 2. INDIVIDUAL DDTFERENCES AMONG 145 FIRST-GRADE Cini/- 
DBEN IN CHEERFULNESS. (Teacher* 1 ratings.) 



INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 



Very inferior Inferior Average Superior Very superior 

5.6% 17.2% 49.6% 20% 7.6% 

FIG. 3. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 145 FIRST-GRADE CHIL- 
DREN IN EVENNESS OF TEMPER. (Teachers' ratings.') 



Very inferior Inferior Average Superior Very superior 

6.2% 17.9% 61% 22.1% 3.8% 

FIG. 4. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 503 CHILDREN IN 
QUALITY OP SCHOOL WORK. (Teadiers 9 ratings.) 



INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 



Very inferior Inferior Average Superior Very nuperior 

4.6% 21.2% 30.8% 27% 7.4% 

FIG. 5. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 392 CIULDRENT, FIRST TO 

EIGHTH GRADE, IN ABILITY TO GIVE SUSTAINED ATTENTION. 

(TeacJiera* ratings.) 

still many domains of mind and character for which 
measuring scales have not been devised. 

It may be argued that the individual differences 
represented in the above graphs arc spurious; that 
they merely reflect the varying degrees of error in the 
judgments of those who furnished the ratings. It is 
an extremely significant f ax&, however, that whenever 
we succeed in devising a method for actually measuring 
a mental trait, as large individual differences are found 
for it as for such physical traits as height or weight. 
The latter are of course susceptible of as accurate 
measurement as practical purposes are likely to de- 
mand. The progress of children through the grades 
of a school system can be measured in terms of age- 
grade status with sufficient accuracy. In the case 



INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 21 

of intelligence, also, the individual differences can be 
measured; perhaps less accurately than height, yet far 
more accurately than they can be estimated on the 
basis of common observation. Figure 6 illustrates 
typical differences among ten-year-old boys in height; 
Figure 7, typical differences among ten-year-old boys 
in ability to win promotions in school; Figure 8, typi- 
cal differences among twelve-year-old boys in I Q; and 
Figure 9, typical differences among 1458 children as 
shown by teachers' ratings for intelligence. Attention 
is directed to the fact that individual differences are 
equally in evidence for the four traits. 

The causes of individual differences in school prog- 
ress. In the case of a physical trait such as height, 
perhaps few would deny that the differences found 
represent in the main differences in original endow- 
ment. That the progress children make through the 
grades of a school system is also chiefly dependent 
upon original endowment is neither so obvious nor so 
generally believed. The common opinion seems to be 
that nearly all children are capable of satisfactorily 
accomplishing eight grades of school work in eight 
years, and that if they fail to do so it is because of 
faulty school management. The remedies most often 
proposed for the prevention of retardation are better 
attendance laws, school census reform, extension and 
improvement of medical inspection, flexible grading, 
and adaptations of the course of study. 

That reform in all these lines is needed, for other 



2 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 



119-123 124-128 129-133 134-138 139-143 144-148 149-153 
2.1% 11% 22% 29.2% 23.7% 10.2% 1.7% 

FIG. 6. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN HEIGHT AMONG 236 BOYS, AGED 
9J TO 10} YEARS. (Baldwin.) 



Grade I II m IV V VI VH 



FIG. 7. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 1896 TEN-YEAR-OLD 
BOYS IN ABILITY TO WIN PROMOTIONS IN SCHOOL. (Shows grade 
location cf ten-year-old boys in Salt Lake City, May, 1916.) 



INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 



I Q 06-75 76-85 80-05 96-105 100-115 116-125 126-135 

5% 15% 20.5% 28% 19.5% 11% .8% 

FIG. 8. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG 83 UNSELECTED 12-YsAR- 
OLD CHILDREN IN I Q AS MEASURED BY THE STANFORD-BINET SCALE 



Very inferior Inferior Average Superior Very superior 

1.5% 16.2% 63.3% 15.5% 3.6% 

FIG. 9. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN INTELLIGENCE AMONG 1458 
CHILDREN, GRADES V TO VIII. (Teachers 9 ratings.) 



34 INTEUIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

reasons as well as for the reduction of retardation, will 
be admitted by all. We are beginning to learn, how- 
ever, that all of these measures combined are power- 
less to reduce greatly the number of over-age children 
in the grades. Notwithstanding the persistent cam- 
paign which has been waged against the evils of retar- 
dation for the last dozen years, the number of retar- 
dates remains to-day much the same as it was when 
the campaign began. We are justified in raising the 
question whether the most important cause of retarda- 
tion has been located, and whether it is one that can 
be removed. 

In the various chapters of this book certain data 
from intelligence tests will be analyzed in the attempt 
to formulate an answer to the above question. The 
facts which will be presented point fairly definitely to 
the conclusion that the differences which have been 
found to exist among children in physical traits are 
paralleled by equal differences in mental traits, par- 
ticularly intelligence. It will be shown that these in- 
nate differences in intelligence are chiefly responsible 
for the problem of the school laggard; that the so- 
called "retarded" children on whom we have expended 
so much sympathy are in reality nearly always above 
the grade where they belong by mental development; 
and that the real retardates are the under-age children, 
who are generally found from' one to three grades 
below the location which their mental development 
would warrant. In other words, it will be shown that 



INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 25 

the retardation problem is exactly the reverse of what 
it is popularly supposed to be. 

Overlapping of mental ages in the different grades. 
The extent of the school's failure to grade children 
according to their ability will be evident from an 
examination of Figure 10, which shows the actual dis- 
tribution of mental ages disclosed by the Stanford- 
Binet scale in the first grade, the fifth grade, and the 
first year of high school in typical public school sys- 
tems of California. It will be seen that not only do 
the first-grade children greatly overlap those of the 
fifth grade, and fifth-grade children those of the first 
year of high school, but that the brightest child in the 
first grade has all but reached a point in mental ability 
corresponding to that of the lowest pupil in the high 
school. The brightest of the fifth-grade pupils is 
above the median mental level for the first year of high 



4 6 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 U 15 16 17 IS 19 




FlG. 10. OVERLAPPING IN THE MENTAL AGES OP CHILDREN IN THB 
FIBST. FIFTH, AND NINTH GRADES 



36 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHTLDBEN 



school, and the brightest of the first grade reaches the 
median for the fifth grade. 

That there are children in the first grade as old 
chronologically as the youngest in the eighth grade is 
generally understood and deplored, but few teachers 
are aware of the fact that mental ages are scattered 
through the grades hardly less promiscuously. Table 
1 shows the grade distribution by mental age of 676 



MENTAL AGE 


I 


II 


GRADE ATTENDED 
III IV V VI VII VIII 


7-6 to 8-5 


26.5% 


56.696 


18.4% 












8-6 to 9-5 


496 


245% 


49^6 


19.496 


196 


196 


196 




9-6 to 10-5 




3.8% 


28.596 


46.696 


14^96 


5.796 


.996 




10-6 to 11-5 






796 


2396 


44.696 


2096 


3.596 


L296 


11-6 to 12-5 






196 


8.896 


19.896 


41.196 


16.696 


12.596 


12-6 to 13-5 








2.696 


996 


37.196 


24.396 


2796 


13-6 to 14-5 






L596 




696 


3196 


23.596 


282% 



TABLE 1. DISTRIBUTION IN TEE GRADES OP 676 UNBELBCTED 
CHILDREN 

By "7-6" is meant 7 years and 6 months. This form of expression will be used 
throughout in both text and tables. 



unselected pupils below the high school who are men- 
tally eight years old or older. 



INDIVTOUAL DIFFERENCES 27 

The failure of school grading to give groups of homo- 
geneous chronological age is a matter of hardly any 
importance compared with its failure to give groups 
of homogeneous mental ability. The chronologically 
old and the chronologically young may and often do 
belong together, the mentally old and the mentally 
young do not. Notwithstanding the sifting which 
takes place at the end of each school year, the resulting 
classification of children has been so far from success- 
ful that, generally speaking, the lowest 25 per cent of 
pupils in any grade belong mentally in a lower grade 
and the highest 25 per cent in a higher grade. Only 
the middle half are classified approximately where 
they should be. Usually more than 15 per cent are 
at least two grades removed from the one in which 
they belong by mental age. 

The tendency to promote by age. It was stated in 
an earlier part of this chapter that the grade progress 
of the school child is governed largely by original 
endowment. However, facts such as those just pre- 
sented show that endowment is by no means the sole 
factor; for if it were, children would be more correctly 
graded according to ability. The other factor is the 
persistent tendency of teachers to promote by the cal- 
endar. The dull are allowed to become somewhat re- 
tarded, but are nevertheless promoted beyond their 
ability to do the work. Occasionally the brightest are 
allowed to become accelerated, but comparatively 
rarely, and almost never as much as they deserve. 



28 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Here arc two children, both in the fifth grade, who 
offer a typical illustration: 

A. Boy; age 14-8; mental age 8-6; I Q 60; years in school 
seven and a half; quality of school work "very inferior"; 
grade status on the usual basis of reckoning, retardation of 
three years. In reality this boy is accelerated two years, for 
his mental level of 8 J is at least two years below that neces- 
sary for satisfactory work in the high fifth grade. 

B. Girl; age 9-8; mental age 13-1; I Q 130; years in 
school three; quality of school work "very superior"; grade 
status reckoned on the usual basis, two years acceleration. 
This girl is not really accelerated, but retarded, for her 
mental level of 13 years would enable her to do average work 
hi the seventh grade. 

The one criterion of fitness for promotion should be 
ability to meet the requirements of the next higher 
grade. Pupils of the type of Child A, kept always at 
tasks that are hopelessly beyond their ability, never 
learn the meaning of success. Those like Child B 
miss the mental and moral stimulus which comes from 
intense application to tasks commensurate with abil- 
ity. We see how badly misplaced any measure of 
reform would be which was designed merely to "pre- 
vent retardation/' in the usual sense of that term. 

But what is the solution of the problem of over-age 
children? Are they to be required to repeat more 
grades than they now do? Would not the policy of 
rigidly holding these children in the grade correspond- 
ing to mental age be even more discouraging than the 
present practice of over-promoting them? It would 



INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 29 

be unfortunate indeed if we were obliged to choose 
between the two evils. Perhaps another solution is 
possible if we will only cease to think exclusively in 
terms of cross-section education. Instead of a single 
curriculum for all, merely divided into eight successive 
levels, it would be better to arrange parallel courses of 
study for children of different grades of ability. Some 
such solution seems necessary if we are to adjust school 
work to the abilities of the children and at the same 
time avoid the admittedly serious evils of repetition. 



CHAPTER 

INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES AMONG KINDERGARTEN 
CHILDREN l 

TESTS were made by Miss Cuneo of 112 children 
attending five kindergarten classes in the cities of San 
Jose and San Mateo, California. The majority of the5 
pupils came from middle-class homes, a few from each 
extreme of the social scale. All were American born. 
The ages were as follows: 





SJHI 


4-4J 


4i-5 


5-5i 


5}-6 


6-6J 


a^r 


Total 


Boys 


5 


9 


11 


12 


20 


6 


1 


64 


Girls 


4 


7 


9 


14 


11 


% 


1 


48 




















Total 


9 


16 


20 


26 


31 


8 


2 


112 





















Range in mental age. Although the total range of 
actual ages was from 3$ to 7 years, all but 19 of the 
pupils were between 4 and 6. As will be seen from 
Table 8, the range in mental age was greater than this; 
namely, from SHfc to 7-7. Of the 112 pupils, 5 were 
mentally below 4 years, 85 between 6 and 7, and 3 
above 7. The kindergarten group all but overlaps in 



1 Written with the assistance of Irene Cuneo. 



AMONG KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 81 

mental age the fifth-grade group described in chap- 
ter V. The highest mental age found in the kindergarten 
was 7-7, the lowest in the fifth grade 7-9. The chances 
are that if twice as many had been tested an actual 
overlapping would have been found. 



Mental 


3 to 


3-6 to 


4 to 


4-to 


5 to 


5-6 to 


6 to 


6-6 to 


7to 


7-6 to 


























Total 


age 


3-6 


3-11 


4-6 


4-11 


6-5 


6-11 


6-6 


6-11 


7-6 


7-11 




Number 


S 


2 


11 


24 


17 


17 


19 


16 


2 


1 


112 



TABLE 2 . MENTAL AGES OF 112 KINDEEGAETBN CHILDREN 




3 3*44*65*66*7 

Mental Age 

Kindergarten 
First grade 



7* 8 8* 9 9* 



FIG. 11. SHOWING OVERLAPPING OP KINDERGARTEN AND FIRST- 
GRADE CHILDREN IN MENTAL AGE 



Comparison of the mental ages of these 113 kinder- 
garten children with the mental ages of 150 unselected 
first-grade children tested by Dickson may be made 
from Figure 11. Nearly a fourth of the kindergarten 



82 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

children equaled or exceeded the median mental age 
of those in the first grade, and more than half equaled 
or exceeded the lowest fourth of first-grade children. 
A large proportion of these kindergarten children have 
a mental maturity which would enable them to do 
satisfactory work in the first grade. 

"The most abrupt break in the curriculum is that 
from the kindergarten to the first grade. At all other 
points every effort is made to bridge the gaps. The 
transition from first grade to second, from fifth to 
sixth, etc., is almost imperceptible. Even the first 
year of high school is rapidly being integrated with the 
last year of the grammar school so as to give the child 
an unbroken educational path which he may traverse 
from the first grade to the university. The kinder- 
garten alone holds aloof, worships at the shrine of a 
special methodological cult, and treats its children as 
belonging to a different order of human beings. 

The tests of Dickson and Cuneo show how little 
justification there is for such an attitude. The fact 
that nearly a fourth of kindergarten children do not 
differ at all in mental ability from average first-grade 
children, and that a fourth of first-grade children are 
on a par with the median kindergarten child, indicates 
that it would be well for the teachers of these two 
grades to come to some kind of understanding. 

Distribution of intelligence quotients. The I Q's 
of the 112 children are listed below in order from high- 
est to lowest. 



AMONG KDSTDERGARTEN CHTLDBEN 33 

152 114 106 93 

146 114 105 93 

142 114 103 92 

136 113 103 91 

130 113 103 91 

130 113 102 90 

129 113 102 90 

126 112 102 90 

126 112 102 90 

125 111 102 88 

124 111 101 86 

124 110 101 86 

123 110 100 85 

122 110 100 85 

121 110 100 85 

121 109 99 84 

121 109 98 82 

121 109 98 81 

121 109 98 80 

120 109 97 80 

119 108 97 80 

119 108 96 80 

118 107 96 79 

117 107 96 77 

117 107 96 76 

114 107 94 75 

114 106 94 72 

114 106 93 61 

The range is from 61 to 152, that is, from feeble- 
mindedness to very unusual superiority. While only 
one could be certainly classed as a defective, there are 
at least three others who are at the borderline of men- 
tal deficiency. The lowest 25 per cent fall to 91 or 
below, the highest 5 per cent reach 117 or above. 
The median is 106. 



84 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Figure 12 shows graphically the number falling in 
the I Q groups 60-69, 70-79, etc. 
























MM 


60-70-80-90-100- 110- 120- 130- 140- 150- 



w 79 89 99 109 119 129 139 149 
.9% 4.6% 11.6% 19.6% 26% 20.5% 12.5% 2.6% 1.8% .9% 

FIG. 12. I Q DISTRIBUTION OF 112 KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 

Sex differences. Is there a sex difference in intelli- 
gence at the kindergarten age? We have asked many 
kindergarten teachers this question and have often 
received an affirmative answer. The opinion seems to 
prevail that girls, even at this early age, are somewhat 
more precocious than boys. Comparison of Miss 
Cuneo's 65 boys and 47 girls suggests that this opinion 
may not be without foundation. The medians and 
upper and lower quartiles were as follows: 





Median 


Lower quartilc 


Upper quartUe 


Bovs 


103 


90 


114 


Girls 


108 


96.5 


116.5 











AMONG KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 35 



Although the brightest subject tested was a boy, 
the median for girls is five points higher than for boys. 
This is not a large difference, but it is appreciable. It 
is probable that, age for age, girls are slightly superior 
to boys in the kind of intellectual ability measured by 
the usual type of intelligence test. This conclusion is 
borne out by the results of many other investigations 
by the test method. It is also in harmony with sex 
comparisons based on teachers' ratings and school 
marks. In the present study, 56 of the boys and 47 
of the girls were rated for intelligence and 46 of the 
boys and 36 of the girls for quality of school work. 
The results were as follows : 

TEACHERS' RATINGS ON INTELLIGENCE 





Inferior and 
very inferior 
(percent) 


Average 
(percent) 


Superior and 
very superior 
(percent) 


Bova 


17 9 


62 5 


19 8 


Girls 


6.4 


61.7 


81 9 











TEACHERS' RATINGS ON SCHOOL WOBK 





Inferior and 
very inferior 
(per cent) 


Average 
(percent) 


Superior and 
very superior 
(percent) 


Boys 


28.9 


58.7 


17 4 


Girls 


8.8 


58.8 


88.8 











36 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Although the superiority of the girls in the tests is 
very slight, sometimes almost negligible, we have 
found in something like a dozen separate studies that 
for a given age or grade the girls invariably make a 
significantly better showing than boys when rated by 
iheir teachers either for intelligence or for quality of 
school work. We do not attempt to say whether girls 
make a better use of their intelligence or whether they 
are more responsive and so appear brighter than they 
are. Both causes may enter. 

Significance of the tests. What do the large indi- 
vidual differences revealed by the tests signify in 
terms of future educational achievement? Is it pos- 
sible, as a result of a forty-minute test of a child who is 
only four or five years old, to forecast with any degree 
of assurance his educational career? With accuracy, 
no; in general terms, yes. There is little likelihood 
that the child who tested at 61 1 Q will ever go above 
median nine-year or ten-year intelligence. On the 
other hand, the three brightest children in the group, 
who tested as high as 140, could in all probability be 
made ready for high school by the age of eleven or 
twelve years. 

Miss Cuneo re-tested seventy-seven of her pupils, 
as follows: 

(1) Twenty-five pupils, interval of two days; () 
twenty-one pupils, interval of half-year; (3) thirty-one 
pupils, interval of two years. The agreement between 
the first test and the repeated test was very dose 



AMONG KINDERGAETEN CHILDREN 37 

except in a few cases. The median amount of change 
in I Q was only six points. One fourth of the subjects 
showed a change of three points or less, and one fourth 
eight points or more. 

Of the thirty-one pupils re-tested after two years, 
there were four who had earned an I Q of 130 or above 
in the first test. Two years later all still tested above 
130 and all were doing "superior" or "very superior" 
work in the second grade. Three of them had gained 
an extra promotion. Of the ten at the other extreme 
who had earned an I Q of 100 or less, not one had 
gained an extra promotion. 

However, there is a serious source of error to guard 
against when testing children of this age. Kinder- 
garten children are in the bashful stage and are likely 
to respond only with silence to tests which they could 
easily pass. The examiner must, therefore, take care 
to get into rapport with the child if he would avoid the 
error of mistaking diffidence for lack of intelligence. 

Special need of tests in the kindergarten. There is 
one reason why tests are more necessary in the kinder- 
garten than anywhere else, if the intellectual differ- 
ences which exist among pupils are to be discovered. 
In other school grades the work itself constitutes a 
kind of intelligence test. The first-grade child who 
cannot learn to read, or the fourth-grade child who 
cannot learn long division, is readily recognized as 
inferior. The work of the average kindergarten offers 
no such clear-cut criterion of intellectual normality. 



38 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The games, drawing, sand-pile activities and card- 
board construction may disclose certain differences, 
but these are vague and lack meaning. 

This difficulty was reflected in teachers* ratings of 
* he kindergarten children for intelligence. When 
i jsked to estimate the intelligence of each child on the 
usual scale of five: very superior, superior, average, 
inferior, and very inferior, the teachers protested that 
there was almost nothing in kindergarten work on 
which they could base a judgment. The ratings on 
intelligence were finally secured, but they correlated 
with I Q's only to the extent of .29. This is not more 
than half the correlation usually found in the grades 
above the kindergarten. The correlation of I Q's and 
the ratings for quality of school work was only .27, 
and that between mental age and ratings for quality 
of school work only .43. 

Certain disagreements between I Q's and ratings 
were due to failure to take account of age differences. 
The 6-year-old is rated "superior" on an I Q about 
10 to 20 points lower than a 4^-year-old must have to 
reach this class. The former gets into the "superior" 
class as easily with 100 1 Q as does the latter with 115 
or 120. The following cases illustrate this error: 

G. J., age 3-8, mental age 4-2, I Q 113, was rated as 
"inferior." M. L. 9 also testing at 113, but aged 5-9, was 
rated "superior." 

N. W., age 3-11, mental age 4-3, 1 Q 109, is rated "in- 
ferior." J. M., age 6-11, mental age 6-6, 1 Q 94, is rated 
"superior." 



AMONG KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 39 



M . S., age 4-1, mental age 5-4, 1 Q 130, is rated "inferior." 
J. P., age 6-3, mental age 6-10, I Q 109, is rated "very 
superior." 

The kindergarten's demands upon intelligence. 
The correlation between mental age and quality of 
work is shown in Table 3. 



Mental age - 


Very 
inferior 


Inferior 


Average 


Superior 


Very 
superior 


7- 4 to 7-10 






1 






6-10 to 7- 3 




m 


1 


i' 


i' 


6- 4 to 6- 9 




t m 


9 


3 


m m 


5-10 to 0- 3 




I 


9 


5 


i 


5- 4 to 5- 9 




2 


3 


3 




4-10 to 5- 3 




2 


13 


4 




4- 4to4- 9 




3 


5 






8-10 to 4- 3 


i 


4 


5 


1 t 




3- 4 to 3- 9 




1 


2 







TABLE 3. CORRELATION BETWEEN MENTAL AGE AND QUALITY OF 

SCHOOL WORK FOR 80 KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 

(Correlation, .43) 

It will be seen that although there is a marked ten- 
dency for those of low mental age to do "inferior** 
work and for those of high mental age to do "superior " 
work, children of every mental age from 8 J to 7| are 
rated as doing "average" work. This can only mean 
that the activities of the kindergarten do not make 
very serious demands on general mental ability. 

Is this a legitimate ground of criticism of the pre- 
primary curriculum? The answer will depend upon 
one's philosophy of the kindergarten. There is much 
to be said for the kindergarten as a combination of 



40 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

nursery and a place for socialized play. Prom this 
point of view its purpose is to serve the life of instinct 
and emotion, rather than to nourish intelligence. It 
is a point of view which is attractive, because it has 
the support of sentiment. Certainly no one would 
wish to see children of four or five years harnessed to 
intellectual work to the exclusion of play. This, how- 
ever, is not the only alternative. Perhaps some of the 
kindergarten activities could be so adapted as to neg- 
lect less than they now do the appeal to intelligence. 
Possibly a half -hour of the day could be advanta- 
geously reserved for work of a somewhat more intel- 
lectual character than the hopping, skipping, sand 
digging or "busy work" of the typical conservative 
kindergarten, much of which has little to commend 
it from any point of view. Madame Montessori's 
injection of more serious activities into the kinder- 
garten would seem to mark a distinct advance. 

The contrast between the usual work of the kinder- 
garten and that of the first grade could be justified 
only on the theory that the child of four or five years 
is all instinct and emotion, and that suddenly at the 
age of six or seven he is brought by a sudden meta- 
morphosis into the life of intellect. A comparison of 
the intelligence tests of kindergarten and first-grade 
children shows how untenable such a theory is. 

But if adjustments are due on the part of the kinder- 
garten, they are perhaps just as much needed in the 
first grade. The chasm must be bridged from both 



AMONG KINDERGARTEN CHILDREN 41 

sides. The mere fact that a child has passed his sixth 
birthday is not a sufficient justification for robbing 
him of all the freedom he has enjoyed in kindergarten 
and home. 



CHAPTER IV 

INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIRST GRADE 

The critical importance of the first grade. The first 
grade is the most critical in the school system. It is 
the place above all others where the raw material with 
which the school is to work should be correctly evalu- 
ated. Success or failure for the child's school career 
hangs often upon his success or failure in the first grade. 
In a way school administrators appreciate this fact. 
Effort is usually made to place the best teachers in 
charge of the entering pupils. School doctors, school 
nurses, and school dentists are commonly urged to 
give special attention to the younger children. Never- 
theless, it is in the first grade that retardation scores 
its worst record. In the average city approximately a 
fourth of ihe pupils Jail of promotion at the end of the 
first year. 

Schools for backward children ordinarily do not 
draw from classes below the third grade. By this time 
the dull pupil is already a lost cause. Special classes 
for superior children, when they exist at all, are too 
likely to confine their efforts to bright pupils whose 
intellectual progress has already been retarded by 
several years spent in the educational lockstep. By 
1 Written with the assistance of Virgil E. Dickson. 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 4S 

this time their intellectual ardor has cooled and the 
edges of their mental faculties have been dulled. 

We cannot deny that the task which faces first- 
grade teachers and supervisors is very difficult. Every 
twelve months the schools of the United States receive 
something like three million fresh recruits. What we 
are urging is the immediate assaying of all this ma- 
terial, year after year. The task is difficult, but we 
believe it is worth while. 

A model study of school grading. The facts which 
will be presented are from an investigation by Dickson, 
who has analyzed the results of nearly a thousand 
Stanford-Binet tests of first-grade children. This ac- 
count will include the results of the first 150 tests only. 

The group included all the pupils found in the first 
grade in five different schoolrooms in the vicinity of 
Stanford University. The rooms will be designated 
by the letters A, B, C, D, and E. Room A included 
chiefly pupils of Spanish and Italian descent, but 
American born. Room B represented a mixture of 
races, with American predominating. Room C was 
similar to A, but contained a considerable number of 
Portuguese, in addition to a few Italian and Spanish. 
Room D drew mainly from the upper and middle 
social classes of American extraction. The children 
of Room E were all from an exceptionally well-to-do 
residential district. 

Dickson used the tests only as a point of departure 
for a more intensive study of the pupils. His purpose 



44 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

was the practical one of trying to translate individual 
differences into terms of classroom management. Ac- 
cordingly, the cooperation of the teachers was enlisted 
in the collection of a large amount of supplementary 
data regarding each child, including: 

1. Date of entering school; 

8. Occupation of the father; 

3. Nationality of each parent; 

4. The teacher's estimate of the child's intelligence; 

5. The teacher's rating of the quality of the school 
work; 

6. The teacher's rating of each child (on a scale of 
five, as in the case of intelligence and school work) on 
each of the following twenty-four traits: power to give 
sustained attention, persistence, social adaptability, 
leadership, initiative, evenness of temper, emotional 
self-control, physical self-control, will power, cheerful- 
ness, courage, sense of humor, obedience, conscien- 
tiousness, dependability, intellectual modesty, unself- 
ishness, coSperativeness, speed, industry, personal 
appearance, popularity among fellows, self-expression, 
accuracy. 

Mental-age differences. The ages extended from 
5 years 7 months to 11 years, a range of nearly 5| 
years. The mental-age range is even greater; namely, 
from 3 years to practically 11 years. The highest 
mental age among these first-grade pupils considerably 
overlaps the lowest we have found in the eighth grade. 
The number at each mental age is shown in Figure 13. 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 45 



3466789 10 

2% 15.4% 20.8% 84.2% 21.5% 4% L8% .67% 

FIG. 13. MENTAL-AGE DISTRIBUTION OF 149 FIBST-GBADB 
CHILDREN 



Mental age necessary for first-grade work. Chil- 
dren are expected to start to school at the age of six 
years. The assumption is that the degree of mental 
maturity corresponding to this age is necessary for 
successful work in the first grade. Is this assumption 
justified? The question can be answered by a com- 
parison of the quality of school work done by the chil- 
dren of different mental ages. The agreement be- 
tween mental age and the ratings for quality of work 
done is shown in Table 4. 

It is evident from this table that mental age is a 
fairly good index of a child's ability to do the work 
of the first grade. No child below the mental age of 
6 years is rated as doing school work above the aver- 
age, while of the 22 pupils rated as "very inferior'* in 



46 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 



Mental Age 


Quality of school work 


5 


4 


s 


2 


1 


Total 


-6 up 










3 


.3 


9-0 to 9- 5 










8-6 to 8-11 








1 
1 

1 

7 
3 
1 


1 

2 

3* 


2 
4 
6 
26 
30 
21 
17 
14 
17 
9 


8-0 to 8- 5 




1 


5 
10 
18 
14 
7 
4 
2 


7-6 to 7-11 




7-0 to 7- 5 




6 
9 
6 

7 
6 

7 
2 


6-6 to 6-11 




6-0 to 6-5 




5-6 to 5-11 


S 

4 
8 
7 


5-0 to 5- 5 


4-6 to 4-11 


to 4- 5 


Total 


/" 


44 


60 


14 


9 


149 





TABLE 4. SHOWING HOW QUALITY OP WORK IN THE FIRST GRADE 
DEPENDS UPON MENTAL AGE. (Correlation .725) 

school work, all are below the mental age of 6. The 
agreement, however, is not perfect. Of the 41 children 
who are mentally 7 years or above, 7 .are rated as doing 
"inferior" work. All but 2 of these are enrolled in 
rooms D and E, where the average mental age of the 
pupils is unusually high. The inference is that teach- 
ers have judged these pupils by too high a standard of 
performance. If placed in room A probably any one 
of them would rank average or above. 

On the other hand, 13 of the 98 pupils below the 
mental age of 6 years are rated as doing school work 
of " average " quality. A satisfactory explanation was 
found in every case. Two of the 18 were repeaters, 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 47 

one of whom was 10 years old and had been in school 
over two years. Under the circumstances they would 
naturally be expected to do average work, even though 
they are slightly below the mental level of 6 years 
The other 11 were all enrolled in classes A and B, in 
both of which the average mental age was extraordi- 
narily low. In room A, 13 of the 38 pupils were below 
the mental age of 5 years, and in Room B 18 out of 39. 
The 11 pupils whose ratings are in question averaged 
in mental age 5 years and 10 months. It is therefore 
not surprising that their school work should have 
been rated as average in an inferior class. 

From such data as the above, collected from all his 
1000 cases, Dickson concludes that below the mental 
age of 6 years the child is not fully ready for the first 
grade, and that below the mental age of 5 J years the 
chances that really standard first-grade work will be 
done are practically negligible. We are beginning to 
see why a fourth of the pupils in the first grade fail of 
promotion, for Dickson finds 38 per cent below the 
mental age of 6 years, and 7 per cent below 5 J. 

On the other hand, there are in the first grade many 
pupils of the other extreme of ability who are kept at 
work which is too easy to command their best efforts. 
Of the 150 children, 15 (10 per cent) are above the 
mental age of 7 years. All of these, and in addition 
perhaps half of the 26 who tested between 7 and 7J, 
could quickly be made ready for the second grade. 
By the present regime these are injured no less than 
the inferiors. 



48 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN " 

The influence of age on the ability to do school work. 
The one condition that the school imposes upon those 
who would enter is that they shall have passed a given 
birthday. If the age criterion were adequate we should 
invariably find the best records in the first grade made 
by the oldest pupils, and the poorest records by the 
youngest pupils. The reverse is the case. Of the 
89 pupils who were above the chronological age of 7J 
years, only 3 were rated above average in quality of 
school work; of the 10 who had reached the age of 8| 
years, none. Conversely, of the 83 who were rated 
above average in quality of work, 18 were under 6| 
years and 80 were under 7| years, chronologically. 

This finding is not new. Every one who has given 
mental tests to any considerable number of school 
children has found that the best pupils in a given grade 
are almost invariably the youngest; the poorest pupils, 
the oldest. In the present instance this is true, not- 
withstanding the fact that most of the older pupils are 
taking the work for the second, third, or fourth time. 
Some, in fact, had started to school before their young- 
est classmates were born. 

Does age give any advantage whatever apart from 
the degrfee of mental maturity which has been attained, 
or does school success depend entirely upon mental age, 
except in so far as it is influenced by such extraneous 
factors as industry, illness, emotional instability, etc.? 

Dickson attempted to answer this question by 
comparing the quality of school work done by older 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 49 

(dull) pupils and the younger (bright) pupils of the 
same mental age. For the comparison he took two 
groups of pupils, all of whose mental ages were be- 
tween 6 and 7 years. The pupils of one of these groups 
were also chronologically between 6 and 7 years, with 
I Q's ranging between 96 and 105. The pupils of the 
other group were between 8 and 9 years chronologi- 
cally, with I Q's ranging from 7 to 84. The average 
mental age in the two groups was almost exactly the 
same. The comparison gave for the older group an 
average rating of 3.7 in school work; for the younger 
group, an average rating of 3.12. Since on our five- 
step scale of rating, 3 means "average" and 2 means 
"superior," it is seen that there is a difference of more 
than a half -step in favor of the younger group. The 
significance of this finding is enhanced by the fact 
that the older group had attended school for an av- 
erage period of 1.9 years, the younger for an average 
period of less than one year. The older group has 
two years the advantage in age, with all the inciden- 
tal experience which age brings, and in addition the 
advantage of a year more of school attendance; nev- 
ertheless their work is less satisfactory than that of 
the younger pupils who are at the same level of men- 
tal age. We have found this to be the rule in a 
number of similar comparisons. The additional spon- 
taneity and adaptability of young normal pupils 
slightly outweigh the advantage of the additional 
experience and schooling which older pupils of the 
same mental age have enjoyed. 



50 INTELUGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The distribution of I Q's. The range of I Q's for 
the 150 pupils is 45 to 145. The-median I Q is 88, and 
it is interesting to note that the brightest child and the 
dullest child are about equidistant from the median. 
The lowest 5 per cent fall to 77 or below, the highest 
25 per cent reach 184 or above. Figure 14 shows the 
distribution of intelligence quotients grouped in ranges 
of ten: 40 to 49, 50 to 59, 60 to 69, etc. 



tl 



J 



40-60-60-70-80-90- 100- 110- 120- 130- 140- 
49 69 69 79 89 99 109 119 129 139 149 
.7% 4.7% 8,7% 18.8% 20.1% 14.1% 16.8% 8.7% 4.7% 1.3% 1.3% 

FIG. 14. I Q DISTRIBUTION OF 149 FIBST-GBADE CHILDREN 

The low median I Q might be due either to real aver- 
age inferiority of the pupils tested or to a defect of the 
scale causing it to yield mental ages too low. That the 
latter is not the true explanation is indicated by the 
high average I Q (107) earned by Miss Cuneo's kinder- 
garten children, who were tested on almost exactly the 
same part of the scale. 1 All the supplementary data 

1 Stanford-Binet tests of more than 2300 children in the kin- 
dergarten and primary grades of Council Bluffs, Iowa, yielded an 
average I Q of 99 points, which is within one point of that which 
would be expected if the scale were correctly standardized. 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 51 



confirm the test results in showing that in three of the 
five rooms, enrolling 107 of the 150 pupils, there was 
an excessive number of children of low mentality. 
Had only rooms D and E been examined, the scale 
would have seemed to err in the direction of too great 
ease. 

Of the 150 children, 1 tested below 70 I Q and 12 
below 60. Those below 60 may safely be considered 
feeble-minded* and probably a majority of those be- 
tween 60 and 70. Most of the low cases were in two 
rooms. 

It will be recalled that the teachers were asked to 
estimate the intelligence of each pupil on the scale of 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5. The extent to which these estimates 
agreed with the tests is shown in Table 5. 



TO'n 




Teachers' e 


jtimates of in 


telligence 




J. VB 


Very inferior 


Inferior 


Average 


Superior 


Very 
superior 


140-149 










2 


130-139 




f m 


. , 


"i 


1 


120-129 




. . 


2 


s 


2 


110-119 




1 


4 


8 




100-109 




5 


20 






90-99 




4 


17 






80-89 


"4 


15 


11 






70- 79 


8 


19 


1 






60- 69 


S 


8 


2 






50-59 


5 


2 


. . 






40- 49 


1 


. 










TABLE 5. AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE TEBTS AND TEACHBES* 
ESTIMATES OF INTELLIGENCE. (Correlation .79) 



52 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The correlation in Table 5 (.79) is fairly high. By 
a painstaking analysis of individual cases of disagree- 
ment, Dickson was able to show that most of these 
were caused by the failure of the teachers to take the 
child's age into account. This is an error which we 
have found over and over, one from which it seems 
impossible for teachers to free themselves even when 
expressly cautioned to do so, as they were in this case. 
The child of 8 years who has a mental age of 6 years 
(I Q 75) and is doing almost average work in the first 
grade, is likely to be rated not far from average in in- 
telligence. The teacher forgets that an average child 
of 8 years ought to be doing average work in the high- 
second or low-third grade. 

How the five classes differed. These five teachers 
are expected to accomplish the same work, to turn out 
a similar product at the end of the year. A comparison 
of the material with which they are working shows 
that any such expectation is impossible of realization 
and unfair to the teachers and to the children. Tables 
6 and 7 show how greatly rooms A, B, and C diffei 
from rooms D and E in the mental ages represented. 



Boom 


Median 
Mental age 


Median I Q 


Per cent 
; below 5* 


Percent 

above 7 


Percent 
repeating 


A 


6-0 


87 


.31 


.10 


.55 


B 


5-7 


76 


.46 


.05 


.35 


C 


6-0 


85 


.20 


.26 


.56 


D 


7-2 


108 


.14 


.60 


.46 





7-8 


112 


.00 


.71 


.07 



TABLE 6. SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES IN THE MENTAL COMPOSITION 
OF FIVE FmsisGBADE CLASSES 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 53 



IQ's 


Room A 


BoomB 


BoomC 


RoomD 


RoomE 


135- up 








1 


1 


130-134 


. , 


i 


. . 


. . 


1 


125-129 


m , 


. . 


f 


1 


2 


120-124 




a 




4 




115-119 


i 


t 


*2 


3 


2 


110-114 


i 


i 




4 


1 


105-109 


2 


t 


*2 


5 


1 


100-104 


5 


i 


2 


2 


3 


95- 99 


4 




1 


2 


2 


90- 94 


8 


*2 


6 


B 4 


1 


85- 89 


4 


3 


2 


2 




80- 84 


6 


9 


4 


4 




75-79 


6 


4 


3 


2 




70-74 


3 


5 


4 


1 




65- 69 


t 


6 


2 


1 




, 60- 64 


1 


3 




B 4 




Below 60 


2 


4 


2 






Median 


87 


76 


85 


108 


112 



TABLE 7. I Q DISTRIBUTION IN THE FIVE CLASSES 

The average mental age in room E is fully two years 
above that in room B, and the median I Q 36 points 
higher. The average child of room E excels the aver- 
age child of room B in brightness as much as an aver* 
age normal child of 100 1 Q excels a feeble-minded child 
of 66 1 Q. Room A has three pupils who grade feeble- 
minded, room B anywhere from seven to thirteen, 
room C two to four, room D possibly one, and room E 
none. Rooms A and C have no pupils who test as 
high as 120, and room B only one; but 1.5 per cent 
of the pupils of room D and 28.6 per cent of those in 
room E grade this high or higher. These differences in 



54 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

relative endowment are reflected in the number of 
repeaters found in the five rooms. 

A third of the pupils in room A and half of those in 
room B are incapable of doing standard first-grade 
work. They are not doing it. The lack of progress 
on the part of the pupils in room B was so evident that 
the teacher was in despair and the superintendent 
doubted her efficiency. But there was nothing wrong 
with the teacher. Her task was simply impossible. 
On the other hand, half the pupils of room E have 
reached a level of mental development which would 
enable them to do the work of the second grad,e; three 
or four of them, the work of the third grade. The lot 
of this teacher is a happy one. Her pupils are able to 
learn without instruction. 

When a class is so far above or below the average in 
ability we would expect the teacher to be aware of the 
fact. That these teachers were only partially so is 
shown by the distribution of their ratings on school 
work in the different classes. Although the teacher in 
room B correctly rates the work of her pupils very low, 
the teacher of room D rates (incorrectly) more of her 
pupils below than above average. Plainly her stand- 
ard is too high, and it is so because the average menta f 
age in her room is above seven years. The teacher oi 
room E complained that six of her fourteen pupils 
were not doing what she would consider good work. 
The average mental age in this class was above 7$ 
years. Dickson estimated that "average" work in 



DIFFEBENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 55 

class E was in reality better than "superior" work in 
any of the other classes. 

Sex differences. Of Dickson's 150 subjects, 79 
were boys and 71 were girls. Only a small difference 
was found in the I Q's of the sexes, the girls having the 
advantage of three points in median. However, as 
rated by the teachers for quality of school work, the 
girls made decidedly the better showing. This was 
true even when the comparison was between boys and 
girls of the same mental age. Among the 150 pupils 
were 15 boys and 11 girls who tested between 95 and 
105 I Q. The ages, mental ages, and the I Q's of these 
two groups were almost exactly the same, yet the boys 
secured an average rating of 3.4 (.4 below "average"); 
the girls an average rating of 2.81 (.19 above "aver* 
age")- That is, boys of average intelligence may be 
expected to do less than average school work, girls of 
average intelligence to do better than average school 
work. As stated by Dickson, "It may be that the 
school curriculum is better adapted to the needs and 
interests of girls; that girls excel in industry and appli- 
cation; that girls more willingly submit to direction in 
a task; that girls are better behaved than boys and 
that school marks are influenced by deportment; that 
teachers (all women) are better suited to teaching 
girls than boys; or it may be any one or a combination 
of many of the causes that might be mentioned." 

Racial and social differences. Three of the five 
rooms (A, B, and C) contained a large element of 



56 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian children, also a 
number of North-European parentage. Most of these 
were born in the United States and all spoke English. 
The median I Q's were as follows: 

Race Number Median I Q 

Spanish 37 78 

Portuguese 23 84 

Italian 25 84 

North-European ... 14 105 

American 49 106 

The children were classified as to social status ac- 
cording to the occupation of the father. The classifica- 
tion was based upon Taussig's division of occupations 
into five "non-competing" groups: (1) professional; 
(2) semi-professional or higher business; (3) skilled; 
(4) semi-skilled; and (5) unskilled. The correlation 
between I Q and the ratings on social status was 
found to be .48. The median I Q or classes 4 and 
5 taken together was 82.5; for classes 1 and 2 taken 
together, 112.5. Only one child in class 5 tested above 
115, and only one in classes 1 and 2 below 85. Two 
thirds of these in classes 1 and 2 were above 100, and 
seven eighths of those in classes 4 and 5 below 100. 
However, bright children do occur in the lower occu- 
pational groups, and when they do they stand out by 
contrast. 

Correlation between intelligence and other traits. 
It will be recalled that as a part of the supplementary 
data Dickson had the teachers rate their children on 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 57 

twenty-four mental and moral traits, in addition to 
intelligence and school work. The interest in such 
ratings lies in their bearing on the debated question 
whether good traits tend to go together or whether 
superiority in certain lines is likely to be offset by 
inferiority in others. The latter belief is called "the 
theory ^>f compensation." It is commonly thought 
that the possession of a number of undesirable traits 
is almost certain to be compensated by marked superi- 
ority in other traits. Every one knows that this is 
sometimes true in individual cases. If it were the rule, 
however, there would be negative correlations among 
some of the traits, and a given individual would show 
a great deal of unevenness in the ratings received. 
Such negative correlations were not found. The 
traits listed below all correlated positively with intelli- 
gence and with one another. The correlations with 
intelligence are shown in Table 8 in order of amount, 
beginning with the highest. 

It is interesting to note that sense of humor, power 
to give sustained attention, persistence, and initiative 
all correlate highly with intelligence. They probably 
depend in large measure upon intelligence. The cor- 
relation of social adaptability with intelligence is also 
high, indicating that there is little truth in the theory 
that bright children tend to be socially queer or out- 
casts. The low correlation of obedience, unselfish- 
ness, and emotional self-control with intelligence are 
of interest. 



58 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Correlation 
Trait t with 1 Q 

1. Sense of humor 58 

2. Power to give sustained attention 54 

3. Persistence 53 

4. Initiative 53 

5. Accuracy 52 

6. Will power 50 

7. Conscientiousness 48 

8. Social adaptability 47 

9. Leadership 44 

10. Personal appearance. 44 

11. Cheerfulness 43 

12. Cooperation 43 

IS. Physical self-control 42 

14. Industry 40 

15. Courage 39 

16. Dependability 38 

17. Self-expression (speech) 37 

18. Intellectual modesty 34 

19. Obedience 34 

20. Popularity among fellows 34 

21. Evenness of temper 31 

22. Emotional self-control 29 

23. Unselfishness 29 

24. Speed 28 

TABLE 8. CORRELATION BETWEEN I Q AND TEACHERS' RATINGS 
ON VARIOUS MENTAL AND MORAL TRAITS 

As a rule, the ratings given an individual child ran 
fairly uniform through the list of traits. 1 Pew children 
showed numerous oscillations from high to low rat- 
ings. Bright children as a rule were rated "superior " 

1 The precaution was taken of having each teacher rate all her 
children on one trait before taking up the next trait. 



II 

CO 00 



I 
1 



jtfj 









s 




/ 






\ 


/ 


s 


/ 




\ 


/ 


x 


/ 


\ 


/ 




^ 


^ 




\ 



















































































































































Ro. 15. TYPICAL " TBAIT PROFILB " OF A VERY BBIGHT CHILD. 
(I Q 133, average rating, 1.34) 




FIG. 16. TYPICAL "TRAIT PROFILE " OF A CHILD OF AVERAGE 
INTELLIGENCE. (I Q 103, average rating, 3.04) 



ii' 



OOP 




FIG. 17. TYPICAL " TRAIT PROFILE " OF A FEEBLE-MINDED 
CHILD. (I Q 45, average rating, 4.46) 



~^I 



ii 



o 

I 

; ; : .' .' : : i : i .' : : I < 

00 

" I 

H 

IlIII^^Ii^I'WM"'" j> ^*-^ 

* ' ' ' & 

~ S 

O O 

30 

_ <3 Z 

rH Ii-eOOf-<^<M I " 

rH ; : ;fHcoco ;?H ; 

GO-*I-H<M : : w 

coH<iH( : 2 

u ^ 

h. 
bL 

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EH 

,H -4 rH H Ol CO CO CO CO * * ^P 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 61 

or "very superior" in nearly all traits, occasionally 
dropping to av< -age. Very dull children as a rule were 
rated "inferior" or "very inferior" in nearly all traits, 
occasionally rising to average. Figures 15, 16, and 17 
reproduce from Dickson's report sample "profiles" of 
one bright, one dull, and one average pupil. 

So marked was the correlation between I Q and 
average rating on the twenty-four traits that knowing 
only the average of these ratings one could roughly pre- 
dict what the I Q would be. As shown in Table 9, the 
correlation is .76. Of the ten pupils with an average 
rating above 2 (1 being highest and 5 lowest), not one 
tested below 110 1 Q. Of the sixteen with an average 
as low as 4, none tested as high as 100, and only one as 
high as 90. Conversely, of the six pupils testing 125 
or above, none had an average rating below 2.24; and 
of the ten pupils testing below 65, none had an aver- 
age rating as high as 3.24. 

Predictions regarding school progress. After the 
tests had been made and all the supplementary data 
had been analyzed, Dickson made a prediction re- 
garding each child's probable school progress. Fol- 
lowing are samples of these predictions: 

Child No. 1. Age 5-10; mental age 6-10; I Q 117; school 
work 2; low-first grade; in school one-half year. Forecast: 
Work should continue superior. Should finish fourth grade 
in three to three and a half years. 

Child No. 15. Age 6-4; mental age 5-7; I Q 88; school 
work 3; low-first grade; in school 1 year. Forecast: Child 



68 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

is dull and quality of school work will go lower. Present 
rating of 3 is explained by low average standard in the 
class. Will probably lose one year before completing fourth 
grade. 

Child No. 21. Age 8-2; mental age 6-8; I Q 81 ; school 
work 4; low-first grade; in school 2 years. Forecast: Very 
dull, and probably will not finish fifth grade by age of four- 
teen years. Not suited to the regular course of study. 

Child No. 86. Age 10-0; mental age 5-1; I Q 51; school 
work 5; high-first grade; in school S| years. Forecast: This 
child will never reach the fourth grade. Should be placed 
in an institution for the feeble-minded. 

Child No. 122. Age 7-6; mental age 10-11 ; I Q 145; school 
work 1; high-first grade; in school $ year. Forecast: Should 
be coached on essentials and moved ahead. May be ex- 
pected to complete the fourth grade within 2f years after 
entering school and is capable of doing so in 1 J years. 

Child. No. 117. Age 7-3, mental age 7-4; I Q 101 ; school 
work 4; high-first grade; in school 1 year. Forecast: This boy 
is average normal, and . an average class would do satis- 
factory work without repeating. However, as the average 
I Q of his class is 112, he is likely to lose a half year or more 
before completing the fourth grade. 

It is easy enough to make predictions. How well 
time will justify them is another question. They will 
be checked annually as long as the children can be 
followed. Thus far they have been checked up once, 
a year after the tests were made. The findings were 
in the large majority of cases in perfect agreement 
with the forecast. In a number of cases in which the 
forecast was not borne out, it could be shown that 
either: (1) the original supplementary information fur- 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 63 

nished by the teacher was incorrect (age misstated, 
etc.) ; or (&) the teacher had erred in promoting a child 
who should not have been promoted, or in holding a 
child back who should have been allowed to go on. 

The retarded group. Of the 150 pupils, 83 were 
retarded, according to the Ayres standard. Dickson 
examined the data regarding these 33 children with a 
view to discovering the causes of their retardation. 
The retarded group was divided into three classes: 
(1) those showing late entrance; (2) those who entered 
at normal age but progressed slowly; and (3) children 
showing both late entrance and slow progress. The 
facts regarding these three classes are stated by Dick- 
son as follows: 

1. Late entrance. "Of the five children who show late 
entrance, only one has normal mental ability (I Q 99). She 
has made regular progre- since entering school and is now 
doing work of average quality. The remaining four are sub- 
normal children mentally, belonging either in the feeble- 
minded or in the border-zone group. The very fact that 
these four children have a low mental level is the most prob- 
able cause of their retardation." 

2. Normal entrance, slow progress. "Eighteen children 
show entrance at normal age, but slow progress. All of 
these are repeaters, several for the third or fourth time. The 
mental level of each one is low. Four are probably feeble- 
minded, the rest would classify in the border-zone or in the 
dull-normal groups. Only one (I Q 91.7) even approaches 
the average normal mental level." 

3. Both late entrance and slow progress. "Ten children 
show both late entrance and slow progress. Eight of these 
have low mentality; one has a mental level approaching the 



64 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

normal (91 1 Q) and is now doing average work; one has a 
normal level (97 I Q) and the facts at hand do not suggest 
any cause of retardation." 

"Qf the 83 retarded children, only 2 have normal mentality 
as shown by the testa. Stated in another toay, 98.9 per cent of 
all the retardation in these five rooms is found in children of low 
mental level. While there may be contributory causes, low 
mentality is undoubtedly the chief cause of retardation in these 
five rooms of first-grade children. 99 

Feasibility of testing all first-grade children. The 
first task of the school when it gathers its newcomers 
together should be to give each child a mental test to 
determine the nature of his endowment. The ' :st 
should then be checked up by a large amount of sup- 
plementary data and by an annual appraisement of 
progress. 

Granting the desirability of giving every child in 
the first grade ,a mental test, is it possible to do so? 
One is tempted to answer that it is possible because it 
is necessary. Each teacher may very well test her 
own pupils, or, if it is preferred, all the testing may be 
done by a few teachers who have had special training 
for such work. The latter plan has been followed 
in Providence, Rhode Island, where during a single 
school year almost 1000 first-grade pupils were tested 
by teachers specially detailed for the task. It is re- 
ported that the experiment has been a great success; 
that the tests showed clearly why a third of their pu- 
pils were f ailing of promotion in the first grade. As 
a result of the experiment the course of study for the 



DIFFERENCES IN FIRST-GRADE CHILDREN 65 

first year was differentiated, and the mentally imma- 
ture pupils were given work of a pre-primary nature. 
In the schools of Council Bluffs, Iowa, all the pupils 
of the kindergarten and primary grades are tested, 
and entrance to the first grade from the kindergarten 
is based entirely upon mental age. 



CHAPTER V 

INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIFTH GRADE * 

HUBBABD investigated the amount of heterogeneity 
in the classes from the fourth to the eighth grades of 
the Alameda public schools. The study took into 
account age, race, sex, social status, achievement as 
shown by school marks, educational measurements 
and teachers' ratings on intelligence. Data were 
secured from approximately 2000 pupils. Such wide 
ranges of individual differences were found that it was 
decided to select two classes in the fifth grade for more 
intensive study by means of the Stanford-Binet tests. 
The two classes were chosen at random. One enrolled 
38, the other 41 pupils. 

Extent of differences. The mental ages, ages, and 
I Q's found in the two classes are shown in Table 10. 

The individual differences revealed in Table 10 
are enormous and startling. Class A has an age 
range from 9| to almost 14 years; class B, from 9| 
to almost 15 years. This would not be so serious if 
all were of approximately equal mental ability. Such 
equality was conspicuously lacking. The pupils of 
class A ranged in mental age from less than 10 yean 
to more than 15 years; those of class B, from 7f years 
to 14 years. Two pupils of class A have reached a 
1 Written with the assistance of O. 8. Hubbard. 



DIFFERENCES IN FIFTH-GRADE CHILDREN 6? 



Class A 


ClassB 


Pupil 


Mental age 


Age 


IQ 


PupU 


Mental age 


Age 


IQ 


1 


15- 3 


11- 8 


130 


1 


14- 


11- 2 


125 


2 


15-0 


10- 2 


148 


2 


13-10 


9- 7 


144 


S 


14-3 


9- 8 


147 


3 


12- 3 


11-5 


108 


4 


14-0 


11- 9 


119 


4 


12- 2 


10-10 


113 


5 


13- 8 


11- 6 


119 


5 


11-11 


10- 2 


118 


C 


13- 7 


12- 1 


112 


6 


11- 4 


13- 


87 


7 


13- 6 


10-7 


128 


7 


11- 2 


I3r- 7 


82 


8 


13- S 


11- 1 


120 


8 


11- 


10- 6 


105 


9 


13- 2 


10- 6 


126 


9 


11- 


11- 5 


96 


10 


12-11 


12- 1 


107 


10 


10-11 


14-10 


74 


11 


12-9 


11- 9 


109 


11 


10-10 


10- 5 


104 


12 


12- 8 


9- 6 


133 


12 


10- 9 


11-9 


91 


13 


12-6 


10- 6 


119 


13 


10-8 


10- 7 


100 


14 


12-6 


10-11 


115 


'14 


10-8 


11-0 


97 


15 


12-4 


10-9 


115 


15 


10-8 


10- 8 


100 


16 


12-8 


11-2 


110 


16 


10-7 


IS- S 


80 


17 


12-3 


10- 6 


117 


17 


10-5 


lfc-6 


83 


18 


12- 3 


13- 5 


91 


18 


10-4 


10- 5 


99 


19 


12-0 


10-6 


115 


19 


10-2 


10-10 


94 


20 


12-0 


10-2 


118 


20 


10-2 


10-11 


93 


21 


11-11 


11- 8 


102 


21 


10-2 


11-2 


91 


22 


11-11 


10- 8 


112 


22 


10- 2 


11-6 


88 


23 


11-10 


12- 1 


98 


23 


10-1 


10- 1 


100 


24 


11- 8 


11-7 


101 


24 


10-1 


10- 4 


98 


25 


11-4 


10- 2 


111 


25 


10-1 


11-8 


86 


26 


11-4 


10-7 


107 


26 


10-0 


11-7 


86 


27 


11-4 


14- 


81 


27 


10- 


11-0 


91 


28 


11-3 


10-3 


105 


28 


9-10 


10- 5 


94 


29 


11- 2 


13rlO 


81 


29 


9-10 


18-4 


80 


SO 


11-0 


11-5 


96 


30 


9- 9 


10- 8 


91 


SI 


11-0 


lfc-4 


89 


31 


9- 6 


11-4 


84 


S2 


11-0 


12-4 


89 


32 


9- 4 


13- 9 


68 


S3 


10-11 


11- 8 


93 


S3 


9- 3 


15-4 


60 


S4 


10- 5 


11-11 


87 


34 


9-0 


14-7 


62 


35 


10- 5 


13- 5 


78 


35 


&- 


10- 2 


89 


36 


10-4 


10-4 


100 


36 


9-0 


12- 8 


71 


S7 


10- 1 


10-10 


93 


37 


8-8 


10- 7 


82 


38 


10- 1 


10-11 


92 


88 


7- 9 


13-0 


60 


39 


10-1 


12- 


84 










40 


10-0 


11-3 


89 










41 


9-11 


10- 


99 











TABLE 10. AGES, MENTAL AGES, AMD I Q's OF PUPILS IN Two 
FIFTH-GRADE CLASSES 



68 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

stage of mental development corresponding to that of 
the average pupil in the first year of the high school. 
Either of these pupils could by six months' appropriate 
training be prepared to do good high-school work. In 
the normal course of events they will not reach high 
school for three and a half years. At least two pupils 
in each class are mentally equal to eighth-grade work. 
Almost exactly half of the pupils of class A are men- 
tally ripe for promotion to the sixth grade, at least, 
and one fourth are ready for the seventh grade. Two 
months of appropriate training would doubtless fit 
them for such promotion. 

On the other hand, class A contains eight pupils and 
class B fourteen pupils who are at the fourth-grade 
level of mental development (9| to 10| years); while 
Class B contains seven who probably belong in the 
third grade. One of the latter, a pupil of 13 years, has 
a mental age below 8 and belongs more nearly in the 
high second grade. Taking the two classes together 
we find all levels of ability represented from that nor- 
mal in the second grade to that normal in the first year 
of high school. 

Consider for a moment the contrast between the 
brightest and dullest pupil in each class. In class A 
the highest I Q is 148; the lowest, 78. In class B the 
highest is 144; the lowest, 60. A child in the 140 1 Q 
class should be able to attain marked success in one 
of the learned professions, but all the refinements of 
educational method are incapable of bringing a child 



DIFFERENCES IN FIFTH-GRADE CHILDREN 69 

of 60 I Q to the level of seventh-grade ability. If 
both should remain in school the former will be win- 
ning Phi Beta Kappa honors at college graduation 
while the latter is still struggling with simple fractions 
or long division. The difference between 140 1 Q and 
60 1 Q is 80 points. The difference between an average 
child and a high-grade idiot, who will never develop 
beyond three years, is also about 80 points. In the 
former case, we do not think of the contrast as being 
so great because our perception of intellectual differ- 
ences in the upper ranges is much less acute than for 
the lower ranges. We are on guard against stupidity; 
,we often fail to recognize superiority. 

Table 10 shows the usual relationship found between 
chronological age and mental age in a given grade. 
Low mental age goes with high chronological age, and 
low chronological age with high mental age. Express- 
ing it differently, the lowest I Q's are possessed by the 
oldest pupils, the highest I Q's by the youngest. In 
class A the third highest mental age belongs to the 
next to the youngest pupil. In class B the second 
highest mental age is that of the youngest pupil. 

The two classes contrasted. Considered as two 
groups which are expected to cover the same work in 
a given time, class A and class B present a striking 
contrast. In class A, 44 per cent of the I Q's are 110 
or above; in class B, only 10 per cent. In class A, 19 
per cent of the I Q's are below 90; in class B, 44 per 
cent. In class A the median I Q is 108, in class B, 91. 



70 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The median mental age in class B is slightly over 10 
years; that in class A, slightly under 12 years. In 
other words, the median mental ability of class A cor- 
responds to that normal to the sixth grade; the median 
of class B to that normal for the fourth grade. Ten 
per cent of the pupils of class B test below 70; in class 
A, none. In class B only 10 per cent of the pupils test 
as high as 110; in class A, 49 per cent. As would be 
expected, the two classes presented an entirely differ- 
ent picture. The pupils of class A were interested, 
alert, and above the average in industry; those of 
class B inert and unresponsive. 

From what we know of the significance of the I Q 
the educational possibilities of these pupils can be 
predicted with a fair degree of assurance. Approxi- 
mately 15 or 20 per cent of the pupils of class B will 
never, with any amount of instruction, be able to do the 
work of the eighth grade satisfactorily, and 50 per cent 
are too inferior in endowment ever to complete a 
four-year course in the average American high school. 
Of class A, close to 80 per cent should be able to gradu- 
ate from a high school. 

Necessity of an absolute standard of comparison. 
The teachers of these two classes were not far from 
equal in ability, training, and devotion to their work. 
Both were above average. Surely, one would suppose, 
they must have been keenly aware of the intellectual 
composition of their classes. They were not, except 
in the vaguest sort of way. Each teacher knew that 



DIFFERENCES IN FIFTH-GRADE CHILDREN 71 

she had some bright and some dull pupils. How 
bright or how dull was not known. Each teacher 
could rate her pupils only by comparing them with 
others in the same class. The teachers' classification 
of the pupils into the usual five groups, very superior, 
superior, average, inferior, and very inferior, gave the 
following results: 

Class A Class B 

(per cent) (per cent) 

Very superior 2.6 0.0 

Superior 15.7 5.2 

Average 63.1 76.3 

Inferior 15.7 13.1 

Very inferior 2.6 5.2 

Although the number rated above average is much 
larger in class A than in class B, as it should be, the 
number rated below average is exactly the same in the 
two classes, namely, 18.3 per cent. The teacher of 
class B did not know that her pupils averaged nearly a 
year below fifth-grade ability, nor did the teacher of 
class A know that her pupils averaged a year above. 
Neither teacher suspected that her class covered a 
range of four or five years in mental ability. In both 
classes the significance of over-ageness and under- 
ageness had been overlooked, for over-age pupils had 
been consistently rated too high and the under-age 
pupils too low by each teacher. It had not occurred 
to the teacher of class B that a high-school education 
was out of the question for half of her pupils. Even 
if she had stopped to consider the fact that several of 



72 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

her pupils were three or four years over-age for the 
grade, how could she have known that this retardation 
would not be made up later? 

The intelligence tests confirmed by other data. The 
contrast between the two classes as shown by the intel- 
ligence tests is confirmed by the Courtis tests, the 
Stone Reasoning test, and the Ayres Spelling lest. 
Following are the median scores of each class in these 
tests and the median scores in the same tests for all 
the fifth-grade classes of the city taken together. 

Class A Class B Entire city 

Addition 7.20 3.16 4.98 

Subtraction 8.12 2.80 4.81 

Multiplication 5.43 1.75 3.56 

Division 3.66 0.00 2.63 

Reasoning 2.56 1.72 1.73 

Spelling 80. 73.75 74.10 

In the four fundamentals and in reasoning the aver- 
age difference between the classes amounts to more 
than two grades. The difference in spelling is consid- 
erably less. 

Retardation and acceleration. If we use the Ayres 
standard and call a pupil retarded who is in the fifth 
grade and 12 or more years old, then a fourth of the 
pupils of class A and 29 per cent of the pupils of class B 
are retarded. This is a rather liberal standard. If 
we use 11J years instead of 12 as a basis for figuring 
retardation in the fifth grade, the amount is increased 
to 41.5 per cent in class A and to 87 per cent in class B. 



DIFFERENCES IN FIFTH-GRADE CHILDBEN 78 

The normal mental age in the fifth grade is 11 years. 
Below 10J a pupil cannot ordinarily be expected to do 
satisfactory work. Of the eleven over-age pupils in 
Class B (i.e., over 12 years of age), only two are as 
high as 12 years, mentally, and seven are below 10$ 
mentally. Five are at the third-grade level of mental 
ability. On the basis of mental age not. a .single pupil. 
in this class is retarded, but seven are accelerated. 
Five of these are accelerated fully two years. The 
median I Q of the eleven over-age pupils is. 74. 

Of the ten pupils in class A who are over-age (above 
12), only three are as much as 12 mentally. Of the 
remaining seven, five are correctly located according 
to mental age and two are a full grade accelerated. 

Again we see that the chief cause of retardation is not 
irregular attendance, the use of a foreign language in 
the home, bad teeth, adenoids, malnutrition, etc., but 
inferior mental endowment. Educational reform may 
as well abandon, once for all, the effort to bring all 
children up to grade. 

We have just seen that the over-age pupils were, on 
the basis of mental age, really accelerated. Turning 
now to the under-age pupils, we find that these are 
the real retardates. Class B has one pupil and class A 
has two pupils who are less than 10 years in chrono- 
logical age. Their mental ages are 14-3, 18-10, and 
12-8. Two of the three are mentally ripe for the eighth 
grade, the other for the seventh. The "accelerates " 
are in fact badly retarded. It is always so. We can- 



74 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

not too often repeat that the retardation problem is 
exactly the reverse of what it is commonly supposed 
to be. On the basis of chronological age, class A, with 
24.4 per cent of its pupils above 12 years, makes a 
better showing than class B, with 29 per cent above 
12 years. On the basis of mental age, however, 49 per 
cent of the pupils of class A are retarded, as contrasted 
with 10.5 per cent of class B. 

From the point of view of mental hygiene the con- 
ditions in the two classes, while different, are almost 
equally unsatisfactory. Class A has 49 per cent above 
the standard mental age for the grade; class B has 76.5 
per cent below. The 49 per cent of class A find the 
work too easy; most of the 76 per cent of class B have 
a constant struggle to keep then- heads above water. 
For both conditions, the educational lock-step, with 
its tendency to promote by the calendar, is responsible. 
Reform will have to be based upon a consideration of 
individual differences measured by mental and educa- 
tional tests* 



CHAPTER VI 

INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN THE FIRST YEAR OF 
HIGH SCHOOL i 

NOTING that a third or morejof the pupils who enter 
high school do not remain to begin the second year of 
work, Proctor decided to attack the problem at its 
most critical point by investigating the abilities of 
first-year students. The aim of the study was (1) to 
find how greatly first-year pupils differ in intelligence; 
() to trace the dependence of school success upon 
intelligence as measured by the tests; (3) to find what 
relation exists between intelligence and elimination; 
and (4) to investigate the possible value of intelligence 
tests in educational and vocational guidance. 

All the pupils who entered the Palo Alto, California, 
High School during the school year 1916-17 were given 
a Stanford-Binet test. The number in this group was 
107. The testing was continued the following year, 
in part with the Stanford-Binet and in part by the 
use of a modified form of the Otis Group Scale. Alto- 
gether, intelligence measurements were made of ap- 
proximately 850 first-year pupils in seven different 
high schools, and of 250 pupils in the eighth grade. 

The purpose of the study was not merely to discover 
individual differences, but also to discover what bear- 
1 Written with the assistance of W. M. Proctor. 



76 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHELDKEN 

ing these have upon educational guidance. It was 
therefore necessary to check up the test results in as 
-many ways as possible. Supplementary data secured 
at the time the tests were given included nationality, 
age, school marks in all the subjects, vocational ambi- 
tion, occupation of father, and teachers* estimates of 
intelligence. What was still more important, Proctor 
followed up the cases over a period of two years, in 
order to note any changes that might occur in the qual- 
ity of the school work and to correlate school success 
with the test results. 1 

As typical of his findings we will present in this 
chapter some of the results of the Stanf ord-Binet tests 
of 137 pupils who had just entered the Palo Alto High 
School. In every respect the results secured by the 
Binet tests were closely paralleled by the group meas- 
urements of more than 700 additional pupils. 

Age differences. The age range was from 13-0 to 
19-3, -with a median of 14-11. The median age for a 
thousand unselected pupils entering New York High 
Schools was 14-5; the median for 1042 in Iowa City, 
14-9. While these age differences are of interest, they 
do not necessarily furnish ground for criticism of school 
grading. Par from maintaining that children ought 
to be graded more by age than they are, it is one of 
the main purposes of this book to show that grading is 



to analyze the material with which high schools work. Professor 
Proctor's book should be in the hands of every high-school teacher. 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 77 

based too much upon age. As will be seen presently, 
the oldest of thesWpupils are mentally far below the 
ability necessary for success in the first year of high 
school, while the youngest are invariably retarded one 
or more grades below the level of their mentality. 

Mental age differences. In our discussion of mental 
ages of high-school pupils it is necessary to point out 
that mental ages secured by the Stanford-Binet above 
14 or 15 years have something of an arbitrary mean- 
ing. No one knows exactly what median intelligence 
is for the ages 15, 16, 17, etc., because it is prac- 
tically impossible to secure unselected subjects above 
14 years. By that age the pupils of inferior ability 
begin to drop out of school. Accordingly, when we 
speak of the mental age, 16, 17, etc., we aie using 
these figure$.rather as scores than as mental ages in 
the literaf sense. We simply know that 16 denotes a 
higher mental level than 15, 17 higher than 16, 18 
higher than 17. With this understanding, however, 
we will continue to employ the term mental age as in 
preceding chapters. 

The mental age scores of the 137 high-school fresh- 
men ranged from 12-8 to 19-6, the latter being the 
highest possible on the Stanford-Binet. The lowest 
was earned by a girl whose chronological age was 19-3, 
the highest by a boy whose chronological age was 13-8. 
Figure 18 shows the per cent of total number at each 
mental age. 

Only 4 of the 137 pupils were below the mental age 



78 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

of 13 \ years. All of these were over-age ("retarded") 
pupils. It appears that but for the tendency of teach- 
ers to promote on the basis of age, rather than on the 



12 



13 

7.4% 



14 
23.3% 



16 



17 
13.1% 



18 



19 



FIG. 18. MENTAL-AGE DISTRIBUTION OF 137 FIRST-YEAR HIGH- 
SCHOOL PUPILS 



basis of ability, there would be few if any pupils in 
this high school much below the mental level of 14 
years. On the other hand, of the 31 pupils who have a 
mental age score of 17 or above, 26 are less than 15| 
years of age. The median mental age of the 137 pupils 
is 15-10. 

The highest mental age in Hubbard's fifth-grade 
classes (15-3) not only overlaps those of the first-year 
high school, but almost reaches the median for the 
latter. However, the lowest mental age in the high- 
school group (12-8) is not nearly as low as the median 
for the fifth grade. 

If we consider the mental age 14-5 to 15-5 to be 
that normal for the first year of high school, then 27, 



DIFFEBENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 79 

or 20 per cent, are mentally below the standard mental 
age for the grade, and 80, or 58 per cent, are above. 
There are 41 pupils, or SO per cent, above the mental 
age of 18J; and 88, or 16 per cent, above the mental 
age of 17$. It could perhaps hardly be maintained 
that all of these 22 ought to be doing the work of the 
junior year, as this work is now constituted, but one 
is tempted to raise the question whether high-school 
curricula are not framed for a higher level of mental 
ability than is justifiable. 

Mental age and school marks. Is success in high 
school largely determined by mental age, as was found 
to be the case in the first and fifth grades? The answer 
will be found in Table 11, which shows the correlation 
between mental age and average school mark for the 
111 pupils who are still in school. 



Average 
mark 


Mental age 


18} to 14} 


14} to 15} 


15* to 16} 


16} to 17} 


17} to 18} 


18} to 10} 


Total 


A 
B+ 
B 
C 
C- 
D 

Total 


4 

4 
4 


4 

7 
10 

2 


4 
6 
5 
4 
1 


1 

12 
8 

2 
4 


1 
3 
8 
1 
1 


3 
5 
4 
3 


5 

28 
37 
25 
15 

1 


12 


23 


20 


27 


14 


15 





TABLE 11. RELATION BETWEEN SCHOOL MASKS AND MENTAL AGE 
(Correlation .45) 



80 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The correlation is moderately high, but considerably 
lower than is found in the grades below the high school. 
The following facts are, however, very significant: 

1. Of the 5 pupils with an average mark of A, not 
one is below the mental age score of 17 years.. 

2. Of the 28 whose average score is B + , not one is 
below the mental age of 15 years. 

3. Of the 56 who earned a mental age score as high 
as 16| years, only 8 have an average mark below B. 

4. Of the 12 with a mental age below 14 , 8 earned 
an average mark of C or lower. 

5. The only pupils tested whose mental ages were 
below 13J years (four in number), had already been 
eliminated because of failure, and so do not appear 
in Table 10. 

Throughout Proctor's study it appears that the 
standards of work which are maintained in the first 
year of average California high schools cannot be 
satisfactorily met by pupils with a Stanford-Binet 
mental age below 13 years, and that below the mental 
age of 14 years the chances of success are not good. In 
rare instances the pupil of 12-year mental age is able 
to m J passing grades, but only by virtue of excep- 
tional application and an attractive personality. 

Intelligence quotients. For the group of 107 pupils 
entering in September, 1916, the I Q's ranged from 79 
to 136, with a median of 105. The lowest 25 per cent 
fell to 96 or below, the highest 25 per cent reached 117 
or above. The median for the boys was 107; for the 
girls, 102. 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 81 

The distribution of I Q's is shown in Figure 19. The 
most striking thing about the distribution is that only 
three cases appear below 85, and only eight cases be- 
low 90. Above 90 the number of cases increases with 
marked suddenness, indicating that entrance to this 
high school is pretty well barred to children who test 
much below 90. 



70-79 80-89 90-99 100-109 110-119 120-129 180-139 
.9% 6.6% 29% 23.3% 21.4% 14% 4.6% 

FIG. 19. I Q DISTRIBUTION OF FIEST-YBAB HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 

Except for the smaller number in the lower range, 
the distribution of I Q's of first-year high-school pupils 
is similar in form to that found for the lower grades. 
However, the Stanf ord-Binet probably grades a trifle 
severely at "the upper end. As is shown elsewhere 
an I Q of 130 in the case of a child of 15 years is 
probably equivalent to an I Q of 140 for a child under 
12. Even so, the range of I Q's from 79 to 138 is very 
great. 



82 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHELDKEN 

I Q and chronological age. There was found, as 
would naturally be expected, a high negative correla- 
tion (-.74) between I Q and chronological age, which, 
of course, simply means that the children who enter 
high school young are generally brighter than those 
who enter late. 



T Q 






Chr< 


jnologica 


[age 






* VI 


IS 


14 


15 


16 


17 


18 


19 


180-139 


% 


2 


1 










120-129 


2 


8 


5 


. B t 


f m 






110-119 


m 


14 


7 


1 


1 






100-109 


m m 


2 


14 


8 


1 






90-99 


. . 


, . 


11 


16 


s 


1 




80-89 


. . 


. . 


1 


2 


2 


1 


1 


70- 79 














1 



















TABLE 12. SHOWING NEGATIVE CORRELATION BETWEEN AGE 
AND I Q. (Correlation -.72) 

As shown in Table 12, no pupil below 13} years 
tested lower than 120. Of the 30 pupils below 14} 
years of age, not one tested lower than 100, and only 
lower 'than 110. It is evident that to enter this high 
school on schedule time ordinarily requires decidedly 
better than average intelligence. On the other hand, 
of the 38 pupils who were above the age of 15}, only 11 
tested as high as 100, and only 2 as high as 110. These 
38 pupils constitute the retarded group, again indicat- 
ing that the chief cause of retardation is mental inferi- 
ority. Of the 38, 70 per cent are below 100 I Q. As 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 83 

we have already stated, the lowest I Q was that of a 
girl who was over 19. 

The negative correlation between age and bright- 
ness is further illustrated by the scores made in the 
vocabulary test. Table 13 shows that in general the 
largest vocabularies are possessed by the youngest 
pupils, the smallest vocabularies by the oldest pupils. 
The positive correlation of vocabulary with mental 
age is shown in Table 14 for comparison. 



Vocabulary 
score 


Chronological age 


13 


14 


16 


16 


17 


18 


19 


90-99 


1 














80-89 


1 
5 

21 
9 

2 


1 
11 
10 
21 
6 


"s 

12 
IS 

2 


1 

2 
4 
8 


l" 
1 


2* 


70-79 


1 

4 


60-69 


50-59 


40-49 . . 























TABLE IS. VOCABXJLARY AND Aon. (Correlation .40) 



Vocabulary 









[entalag< 


i 






core 


13 


14 


15 


16 


17 


18 


19 


90-99 














1 


80-89. 












1 


1 


70-79 






1 


6 


4 


6 


4 


60-69 




s 


10 


18 


10 


6 


2 


50-59 


2 


10 


17 


13 


5 


1 


, . 


40-49 


1 


9 


2 


2 




. . 


. . 


80-39 


1 


1 






9 f 


. . 


. . 



















TABLE 14. VOCABULABY AND MENTAL AQB. (Correlation +.656} 



84 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

I Q and school work. The correlation between I Q 
and school work was somewhat higher than between 
mental age and school work (.545 as against .44). 
While the disagreements were fairly numerous, most 
of them could be accounted for by such factors as 
health, attendance, degree of application, and attitude 
toward work. Often it was the test which disagreed 
most with quality of school work that contributed 
most to an understanding of the pupil. In general, 
however, school work rose and fell with I Q, as is 
shown by Tables 15 and 16. 



School marks 


Average I Q 


No. cai 


50-59 


85 


12 


60-69 


100 


16 


70-79 


107 


56 


80-89 


110 


24 


90-99 


123 


4 



TABLE 15. AVERAGE I Q FOB DIFFERENT SCHOOL MARKS 



I Q Average mark 


No. cases 


75- 84 63 


2 


85- 94 72 


17 


95-104 74 


28 


105-114 76 


24 


115-124 81 


19 


125 and over 83 


12 



TABLE 16. AVERAGE SCHOOL MARK FOR DIFFERENT I Q's 

I Q and teachers' estimates of intelligence. The 
teachers were asked to estimate the intelligence of 
each pupil on the usual scale of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. For 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 85 

pupils the ratings were made by at least three teachers. 
The ratings for each child were then averaged to secure 
a composite rating. The teachers did not confer with 
one another in making the ratings nor did they know 
the results of the tests. The correlation of the com- 
posite ratings with I Q's is shown in Table 17. 



Composite 


Intelligence Quotient 


ratings by 




teachers 


















75-84 


85-94 


05-104 


105-114 


115-124 


125-184 


135+ 


1 to 1.74 










4 


8 




1.75 to 2. 49 


t 


1 


8 


8 


7 


4 


1 


2.5 to 8. 24 


. . 


7 


12 


12 


6 


4 




3.25 to 3. 99 


, m 


6 


18 


4 


2 






4 to 4.75 


2 


8 


1 





- 









TABLE 17. SHOWING AGREEMENT BETWEEN I Q AND TEACHERS* 
RATINGS ON INTELLIGENCE. (Correlation .59) 

The correlation is fairly high. It would have been 
considerably higher but for the fact that the over-age 
children were rated too high, the under-age children 
too low. The_tendency of . teachers, is to, base their 
estimates of intelligence on the quality of the work, 
paying too little attention to age or degree of applica- 
tion. The correlation between the teachers' ratings 
and the class marks was .70. There were eight pupils 
below 95 I Q who received an intelligence rating of 
"average." All but two of these were above the me- 
dian chronological age of the class. 

Although the teachers* ratings were made independ- 



86 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

ently of each other, there proved to be an average inter- 
correlation of .677 between the ratings of one teacher 
and those of another. This would indicate that all the 
teachers based their estimates of intelligence on much 
the same thing, namely, quality of school work. 

Relation of intelligence to elimination. Of the 107 
who entered the Palo Alto High School in 1916-17, 
all of whom were tested, there were 27 who did not 
reenter the following year. Fourteen of these had 
transferred to other schools and IS had left school "to 
go to work." The I Q's of the latter group were 79, 
83, 85, 87, 90, 9, 97, 97, 101, 105, 106, 115. The boy 
with I Q of 115 had left only temporarily on account 
of family finances. Ten of the 13 were below the 
median I Q for the class (105). The average I Q of 
the 14 who transferred to other schools was 110. The 
average of the 13 who dropped out was 94. Seven of 
the 13 had received marks denoting failure in more 
than half their school work. Plainly most of these 
pupils did not really "quit school to go to work "; they 
went to work out of school because they could not do 
the work in school. 

Had there been a better understanding of the degree 
of mental ability necessary for success in certain stud- 
ies fewer eliminations would have resulted. In this 
high school, at least, the pupil with I Q below 90 is 
practically certain to fail in such studies as algebra 
and Latin. For purposes of educational guidance it 
will be necessary to establish the lower limits of intel- 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 87 

lectuality necessary for success in the various high- 
school subjects. 

Other evidence that elimination is selective. In 
the average American city not more than 40 per cent 
of the pupils who enter the first grade remain to enter 
high school, and ordinarily not more than 10 per cent 
graduate from the high school. Smaller cities make 
somewhat better records, hut it is an exceptional 
school system that graduates from the high school as 
many as one fifth of its children. In the case of the 
318 cities of all sizes studied by Strayer, the central 
tendency was for about 37 per cent to enter the first 
year of high school, 85 per cent to enter the second 
year, 17 per cent the third year, and 14 per cent the 
fourth year. 1 The 58 cities studied by Ayres and the 
3 studied by Thorndike made a considerably lower 
record, particularly in the third and fourth high-school 
grades. It is not uncommon for one third to drop out 
without completing the work of the first year. Not 
all of this elimination is traceable to inferior mental 
ability, but that a large part is due to this cause there 
is no longer room for doubt. 

Van Denburg studied the school records of 1000 
representative children who entered the first year of 
high school in New York City. That these 1000 pupils 
represented a rather highly selected group is shown by 
the fact that although only one pupil in twenty-three 

1 Strayer, G. D., Age and Grade Census cf Schools and Colleges. 
Bull. No. 451, U.S. Bureau of Education, p, 6. 



88 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

in the elementary schools of New York gained special 
promotion, one third of those who entered high school 
had done so. We have already seen that pupils who 
enter high school considerably retarded are almost in- 
variably pupils of inferior ability, and that those who 
enter under-age are exceptionally bright. Remember- 
ing this, it is interesting to note that Van Denburg 
found that pupils who enter late are very much less 
likely to graduate than those who enter young. The 
same result was found for Iowa City over a period of 
ten years. 1 Table 18 shows the "graduation expect- 
ancy" of pupils who enter at various ages. 



Age of 
entrance 


Iowa City 
(per cent) 


New York 
(per cent) 


lfc-18 


65 


28 


18-14 


50 


19 


14-15 


89 


10 


15-16 


89 


6.5 


16-17 


17 


8.5 



TABLE 18. GRADUATION EXPECTANCY OF PUPILS ENTERING HIGH 
SCHOOL AT VARIOUS AGES 

Even when the late entrant remains to graduate he 
normally requires more than four years to do so. For 
example, King found that only 18 per cent of those 
entering at 16 graduated in four years, and only 9 per 
cent of those entering at 17. 

Van Denburg's 1000 pupils were rated by their 
teachers on ability shortly after they entered upon the 

1 King, Irving, The High School Age (Dodd, Mead & Co., 1914), 
p. 196. 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 89 

first semester's work. Three grades were used: 
"high," "average," and "low." Of those rated 
"low" 50 per cent dropped out in one half year or less; 
of those rated "average," 50 per cent dropped out 
within one and one half years; of those rated "high," 
50 per cent remained for three years or more. The 
marks given these pupils at the end of the first term 
proved also to have great value as an index of future 
elimination. The median expectancy for those secur- 
ing various marks was as follows: 

Average of 1st term's Time during which 50 per 
marks (per cent) cent remained in school 

0-49 } year 

50- 59 1 " 

60- 69 1J years 

70- 79 2J " 
80-100 4 " 

There can be but one conclusion from facts like those 
we have just cited: high-school elimination is very selec- 
tive. Although there are many individual excegtioS; 
the pupils who drop, out are jnjhe main pupils of in- 
f erior ability. The high school offers little which can be 
done by pupils of much less than average intelligence, 

Are high-school standards too high? It would seem 
that if the pupils of inferior ability are to be retained 
the high school will have to do one of two things: 
either (1) lower the standards in the present courses, 
or () add other studies which are easier while at the 
same time educationally worth while. 



90 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

It may be that we have judged the high school too 
exclusively by the difficulty pupils encounter in meet- 
ing its standards for graduation. Largely through 
the influence of the university, the bars have been 
raised until graduation is well beyond the intellectual 
endowment of a large proportion of children. Below 
90 I Q graduation is by no means likely, and nearly a 
third of all children test this low or lower. Proctor 
found that 70 per cent of those testing below 95 I Q 
failed in more than half of their studies. A nation 
falls short of the true ideals of democracy which re- 
fuses to furnish suitable training to a third of its chil- 
dren merely because their endowment does not enable 
them to complete a course of study which will satisfy 
the requirements for college entrance. 

There was a time when those whose ability would 
not carry them through algebra or Latin could turn 
with some hope of success to the modern languages or 
to science. In proportion as these studies became 
established they too raised their requirements. When 
the commercial subjects were brought into the high- 
school curriculum, these in turn became the dumping- 
ground for failures. However, the teachers of com- 
mercial subjects were not long in discovering that 
there is no demand in stenography or bookkeeping foi 
commercial graduates of inferior ability. At present 
other lines of vocational training are being introduced 
into the high school and the pupils who cannot succeed 
in the older subjects are turning to these. Whether 



DIFFERENCES IN HIGH-SCHOOL PUPILS 91 

the solution will be found there will depend largely on 
the variety of courses the high school undertakes to 
offer, and on whether it is willing to forego the semi- 
collegiate standards in favor of a humbler task. 

High schools at present are in a measure "class" 
schools. The child of 75 to 85 I Q has an inalienable 
right to the kind of training from which he can derive 
profit. Since there are so many who cannot master 
the usual high-school studies, new lines of work of a 
more practical nature will have to be added. Since 
there are probably.teivper cent who have not-even the 
ability to complete the work preparatory to high school, 
the differentiation of courses wilLhave to begrar-in the 
sixth or seventh- grade. Instead of being undemo- 
cratic, as some have argued, such differentiation of 
courses and enlargement of opportunities for vocational 
training of the humbler sort is a necessary corollary, of 
the truly democratic ideal. 



CHAPTER 

THE MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING * 

THE I Q does not itself tell us in what grade a pupil 
belongs. A child testing at 75 I Q and another testing 
at 125 may be equally ready for work of fourth-grade 
difficulty, provided the chronological age of the former 1 
is thirteen and that of the latter eight. Each would 
thus have a mental age of approximately ten years. 
The basis of grading is therefore mental age rather 
tharul (J. The latter is merely an index of brightness; 
It is extremely significant, because it enables us i& 
forecast a child's later mental development, but grade 
of work which a pupil can do at any given time de- 
pends rather upon the absolute mental level. 

There is a slight correction to add to this statement. 
To a certain extent I Q differences do affect the qual- 
ity of school work which a given mental age may do. 
In the illustration given above, it is altogether likely 
that the eight-year child of 125 I Q will do somewhat 
better work in the fourth grade than the thirteen-year 
child of 75 I Q, even though they have the same men- 
tal age. The greater intellectual spontaneity of the 
young bright child somewhat outweighs the advantage 
which the older but mentally inferior child has in age 
and school training. 

1 Written with the assistance of Isabel Preston. 



MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 93 

Normal mental age for the different grades. The 
child is expected to start to school between the ages of 
six and seven years. Although many start later and 
some younger, the average entrance age in most parts 
of the United States is not far from six and a half. 
Reckoning on this basis the standard mental age for 
the different grades would be as follows : 

Grade Standard mental age 

1 6-6 to 7-5 or approximately 7 years 

H 7-6 to 8-5' " 8 " 

HI 8-6 to 9-5' " 9 " 

IV 9-6 to 10-5' " 10 " 

V 10-6 to 11-5' " 11 " 

VI 11-6 to 12-5' " 12 " 

VH 12-6 to 13-5' " 13 

VEI 13-6 to 14-5" " 14 " 

High School I. ... 14-6 to 15-5" " 15 " 
Etc. 

Children who are in grades corresponding to these 
standards are in the large majority of cases found 
doing work of average quality. If the mental age is 
much above or below the norms just indicated the 
school work is usually correspondingly superior or 
inferior. 

Table 19 shows the per cent of children rated as 
superior, average, or inferior who are in the grade cor- 
responding to mental age (19S6 cases). 

It is seen that the mental age norms we have given 
fit the difficulty of work in the different grades fairly 
closely. There is a slight tendency, however, for chil- 



94 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDEEN 







Quality of work 


Mental age 


Grade 


Inferior or 
very inferior 
(percent) 


Average 
(percent) 


Superior or 
very superior 
(percent) 


6-6 to 7-5 


I 


20 


52 


28 


7-6 to 8-n5 


n 


26 


46 


28 


8-6 to 9-5 


m 


23 


57 


20 


0-6 to 10-5 


IV 


25 


54 


21 


10-6 to 11-5 


V 


24 


58 


18 


11-6 to 12-5 


VI 


SI 


49 


20 


12-6 to 13-5 


VII 


28 


50 


22 


13-6 to 14-5 


vm 


31 


48 


21 


14-6 to 15-5 


H.S.I 


47 


34 


19 



TABLE 19. SHOWING QUALITY OF SCHOOL WORK DONE BY CHILDREN 
WHO ARE IN A GRADE CORRESPONDING TO MENTAL AGE 

dren of the mental age 6-6 to 7-5 to do better than 
average work in grade I, and for those of mental age 
13-6 to 14-5 to do below average work in grade VIII. 
This is what should be expected, since the average 
mental and chronological ages for grade I are a little 
below seven years, and those of grade VIII a little 
above fourteen years. In the first year of high school 
the child of standard mental age finds it still more 
difficult to do average work. The median mental ages 
actually found in the eight grades and the first year of 
high school are as follows: 



Grade 


I 


n 


m; 


IV 


y 


VI 


vn 


VUI 


H 8 L 


GaseA tested**** 


811 


189 


181 


253 


22G 


236 


193 


180 


137 


Median mental 






















6-10 


7-11 


9-0 


9-11 


11-0 


12-1 


13-1 


14-2 


15-4 























MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 95 

So far, we have shown that the child of standard 
mental age for a given grade tends to do average work 
in that grade. It remains to show that if the mental 
age is above or below the standard, the school work 
tends to be superior or inferior to the average. 

Of the 1936 children appearing in the above table, 
120 were two or more years above the grade normal to 
their mental age. This is 6.8 per cent of the entire 
number. Of thel&O not one was rated as doing superior 
work, and only 19 as doing average work. The remain- 
ing 101 were rated as doing work of inferior or very 
inferior quality. Of the 1936 there were 234 who were 
located in a grade two or more years below the stand- 
ard for their mental age. Of these, 52 per cent were 
rated above average in school work, 33 per cent aver- 
age, and 15 per cent below average. 

Summarizing, we can say that while children located 
in a grade two years above mental age are rarely able 
to do average work, there are somewhat more in a 
grade two years below mental age whose school work 
is not satisfactory. The child with mental age more 
than equal to his work may yet fail because of illness, 
lack of application, or for any of a number of reasons. 
On the other hand, exceptional industry can rarely 
make good the disadvantage which a child suffers 
whose mental age is two or three years below the 
grade standard. 

Sources of error in judging school success. The 
agreement of school performance with mental age 



96 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

standards would doubtless have been closer if all the 
teachers who rated their children had been infallible 
udges of the quality of school work, if the work of a 
given grade had always been of the same difficulty, 
and if they all had taken the terms " average/ 5 " supe- 
rior," and " inferior " in exactly the same sense. All 
of these sources of error are serious, especially the last. 
As we have pointed out so many times, each teacher 
tends to take as her rating standard the average work 
actually being done in her class. If her class has a 
disproportionate number of dull pupils she tends to 
rate too high; the reverse, if her class as a whole is 
exceptionally bright. 

Ratings on school work are also likely to be influ- 
enced by the personal traits of the individual children. 
Traits which tend to cause over-rating are vivacity, 
responsiveness, talkativeness, self-confidence, good 
looks, neatness, application, and conscientiousness. 
The child who is vivacious and self-confident, but 
parrot-like and superficial, is almost sure to be over- 
rated; the stolid-appearing or quiet and timid child, 
to be under-rated. The child who does his work 
neatly and conscientiously is likely to be rated more 
leniently than the child who is slovenly, careless, or 
disobedient. The child whose hearing or speech is 
defective is also at a disadvantage in such compara- 
tive ratings. 

Errors of this kind, however, are not sufficient to 
account for the fact that only forty to sixty per cent 



MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 97 

of school pupils are located in the grade corresponding 
to mental age. Perhaps an even more frequent cause 
of incorrect grading is the tendency of teachers to 
promote children by age, resulting in over-promotion 
of the dull and under-promotion of the bright. The 
teacher does not ordinarily realize how far the dull 
over-age child has been promoted beyond the grade 
where he could do average work. She is still farther 
from knowing that the typical under-age bright child 
would in a majority of cases continue to do satisfac- 
tory work if promoted one or two grades. 

However, there are occasional discrepancies be- 
tween mental age and school performance which can- 
not be traced either to errors in rating or to mechani- 
cal methods of promotion. The quality of a child's 
school work depends in part upon other factors than 
intelligence, among which are health, regularity of 
attendance, degree of application, attitude toward 
teacher, emotional stability, amount of encouragement 
at home, etc. The effect of most of these extraneous 
factors is to make school performance less satisfactory 
than the mental age would lead us to expect. 

Discrepancies between mental age and school per- 
formance. For several years, in connection with Binet 
tests made by many Stanford University students, we 
have investigated those cases in which a marked dis- 
agreement was found between mental age and school 
performance. The findings would fill a long and in- 
teresting chapter, but the results of a single series of 



98 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tests will acquaint the reader with the common types 
of cases. We will select for this purpose the investi- 
gation of Miss Preston, who made a study of the dis- 
agreements found in tests of 238 pupils in the eight 
grades of the Santa Clara, California, grammar school. 
The pupils tested constituted about a third of those 
enrolled in the school, and were selected so as to be as 
nearly as possible representative. Most of them had 
also been given the Trabue B and C Completion Tests 
and the Army mental test. In addition each child 
was rated by the class teacher on each of the following: 
social status, school work, intelligence, dependability, 
and social adaptability. Miss Preston had been for 
ten years principal of the school in which the tests 
were made, and had known all the children personally 
from the time they first entered. Her acquaintance 
with parents and home conditions was also of great 
advantage. 

It was found that in the great majority of cases the 
result of the Stanford-Binet test agreed remarkably 
well with the child's school work, particularly when 
the quality of work for a period of years was made the 
basis of the comparison. The 238 tests yielded only 
"84 discrepancies worthy of note, and many of these 
were not large. In 29 of the 34 cases the quality 
of school work as rated by the teacher was poorer 
than the mental age would seem to warrant, and 
in only 5 cases better. Where discrepancy of the 
latter kind occurred it was ordinarily due either to ex- 



MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 99 

ceptional application on the part of the child or to the 
effect of vivacity, responsiveness, or other favorable 
personal traits in influencing the teacher's judgment. 
On the other hand, discrepancy in the direction of in- 
ferior work resulted from a variety of causes, including 
timidity, lack of self-confidence, physical defects, lack 
of application, emotional instability, psychopathic 
heredity, home " spoiling," love affairs, etc. 

In the following pages we present Miss Preston's brief 
description of the salient features of typical cases of 
discrepancy. The ratings given by the teacher were in 
this experiment based on a scale of seven, 1 as follows: 

1. "Very superior"; 

2. "Superior"; 

3. "Above average"; 

4. "Average"; 

5. "Below average"; 

6. "Inferior"; 

7. "Very inferior." 

Showing effect of unusual application. 

Ernest. Age 15-0, mental age 12-3, I Q 82, eighth 
grade, quality of work 5. Portuguese, social status 5. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 5, social adaptability 8, de- 
pendability 3. 

Discrepancy: The mental age is a year and a half below 
that normal for the eighth grade, but the work is passing 
(though below average). 

1 It will be necessary to bear in mind that the numbers designat- 
ing ratings do not correspond to those quoted in other chapters of 
this book, most of which were based on a five-fold instead of a seven- 
fold classification. 



100 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Ernest's teachers agree that the .test has rated his intellec- 
tual ability correctly. It happens, however, that his most 
characteristic trait is one which escapes an intelligence scale. 
Ernest is an erect little fellow, with a straightforward look, 
who works with all his might at anything he attempts to do. 
No other pupil in the school equals him in application. He 
often reaches school ten minutes after seven o'clock in order 
to study his history lesson until nine. First he reads and 
re-reads his lesson in an attempt to get the meaning. Then 
he writes it. After that he says it aloud over and over. 
When the other children begin to arrive he hauls one of them 
in to hear him recite it and to have him explain what some of 
the words mean. In class, Ernest is a living question mark. 
"What does it mean by those words?" "Does it mean 
this?" He is oblivious to the teacher's impatience and to 
the amusement caused among his fellow pupils. There is 
no escape from his questions. Even as the line files in or 
out his teacher gets a "What does this mean?" as he 
marches by. When Ernest does a thing he does it thor- 
oughly, in school or out. He is captain of the baseball team 
and docs a vigorous job of it. 

Showing effect of child's personality on the teach- 
er's ratings* 

Jennie. Age 12, mental age 10-8, I Q 89, sixth grade, 
quality of work . American, social status 3. Teacher's 
ratings: intelligence 2, social adaptability 2, dependability 2. 

Discrepancy: "Superior" work in a grade which is more 
than a year above her mental age. 

Jennie attracts attention by her smiling, vivacious face 
and sparkling eyes. She is alert, quick in movement, but 
without self-consciousness. In conversation she is respon- 
sive, eager and reflects your every expression. In class her 
eye never leaves the teacher's face and she follows every ex- 
planation with intent eagerness. All of this naturally influ- 



MENTAL-AGE STANDABD FOR GRADING 101 

ences the teacher's estimate of her intelligence and school 
work. 

Donald. Age 12-0, mental age 16-8, I Q 189, sixth 
grade, quality of work 2. American, social status 3. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 2, social adaptability 2, de- 
pendability 2. 

Discrepancy: The mental age would indicate ability to do 
high school work, but Donald is only in the sixth grade. 
However, his work hi this grade is "superior" and it is prob- 
able that he would be able to do satisfactory work in a higher 
grade. 

Donald is chiefly of interest hi comparison with Jennie, 
described above. The two are of almost exactly the same 
age and are both doing "superior" work hi the sixth grade. 
Jennie, however, is barely average-normal in intelligence, 
while Donald tests at 139. This difference is confirmed by 
the Trabue test and also by the Army test. 

In personality Donald presents a striking contrast to Jen- 
nie. Her responsiveness and vivacity are fully matched 
by his apparent stolidity and shyness. Donald talks only 
in monosyllables. He has been so thoroughly suppressed 
at home by a severe father that he is shrinking and timid. 
When successful in drawing him out one finds a highly sensi- 
tive nature of rare sweetness and poetic feeling. But the 
least stir sends him shrinking back into his shell with a hurt 
air and a suspicious glance. He has no self-confidence, 
never expresses his feelings, and avoids doing anything that 
could possibly attract attention. 

Claire. Age 9-10, mental age 12-7, I Q 128, fourth 
grade, quality of work 2. American, social status 4. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 2, social adaptability 2, de- 
pendability 1. 

Discrepancy: Mental age two years above her grade. 
However, her school work is superior and she could proba- 
bly do the work in the next higher grade. The fact that 



108 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

she has had one extra promotion agrees with her high in- 
telligence quotient. 

Claire is slow in her movements and slow in finishing 
assigned tasks. She is diffident, hesitating in speech, and 
waits for approval. Her teacher seldom realizes, until re- 
view time, how thoroughly Claire gets her work. 

Showing effect of timidity and lack of self-confi- 
dence. 

Clifford. Age 8-5, mental age 8-6, I Q 101, third 
grade, quality of work 5. American, social status 4. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 4, social adaptability 4, de- 
pendability 4. 

Discrepancy: In grade corresponding to mental age, but 
his work until last year barely passing. 

Clifford has no self-confidence. His .mother speaks in 
his presence of his stupidr and compares him disparag- 
ingly with his bright older brother. Hard to get Him to try, 
but his work has recently shown improvement. 

Louise. Age 9-1, mental age 10-6, I Q 115, fourth 
grade, quality of work 6. American, social status 3. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 4, social adaptability 4, de- 
pendability S. 

Discrepancy: School work "inferior" although mental age 
would indicate ability for the fourth grade. 

Louise is timid and easily worn out by excitement. Likely 
to appear bewildered when placed in a group. Is domi- 
nated by an older sister whom she worships, but who has 
reached an irritable stage in her development. Louise can- 
not please her in any way, although her endeavors are con- 
stant. 

Showing effect of mental inertia. 

Leonard. Age 13-6, mental age 13-10, 1 Q 103, seventh 
grade, quality of work 6. American, social status 5. 



MENTAL-AGE STANDABD FOB GRADING 103 

Teacher's ratings: intelligence 5, social adaptability 5, de- 
pendability 5. 

Discrepancy: Both chronological age and mental age 
normal for grade, but school work has always been decidedly 
inferior. 

Leonard's father, now dead, was a shiftless drunkard. 
The mother, ostensibly a nurse, leads an immoral life. 
Several cousins are feeble-minded. Leonard's smiling good 
nature and constitutional indolence are proverbial among 
his teachers. One wonders whether he ever did anything 
he was not compelled to do. In school he sits smiling pleas- 
antly at others or staring off into space, dreaming. When 
prodded by the teacher he opens his book and stares into 
it vacantly. Perhaps the book is upside down. Occasion- 
ally he wakes up and gives a clear, fluent account of some- 
thing he has read or seen, but he soon lapses again into his 
customary state of oblivion. 

Showing effects of emotional instability or nervous 
tendencies. 

Olivia. Age l$-6, mental age 13-2, I Q 105, seventh 
grade, quality of work 6. Portuguese, social status 4. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 5, social, adaptability 4, de- 
pendability 4. 

Discrepancy: Up to grade-age mentally and chronologi- 
cally, Olivia has been promoted on trial from almost every 
grade. 

Of Portuguese parents whose heads have been turned by 
prosperity. The mother says in her presence that Olivia 
has inherited her own nervousness and inability to do arith- 
metic. Needless to say, Olivia is nervous and cannot do 
arithmetic. She flounces around at her lessons, adds a bit, 
jiggles her desk, drops her books, picks them up, caresses 
her curls, etc. When in trouble pretends to be about to 
faint, but quickly recovers if threatened with punishment. 



104 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Emotional instability fully explains the discrepancy be- 
tween intelligence and school success. 

Joseph. Age 13-10, mental age 15-9, I Q 114, eighth 
grade, quality of school work 6. American, social status 5. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 4, social adaptability 6, de- 
pendability 6. 

Discrepancy: Mental age above average for grade, but 
school work very unsatisfactory. 

Joseph has two sisters who are feeble-minded and blind. 
Two of his three brothers, also feeble-minded, are dead. The 
third brother is a "movie" star of national fame. Joseph's 
mother is a kindly faced woman who has been deserted by 
her worthless husband, and supports herself by taking hi 
washing. Joseph himself is a bookworm, reading every- 
thing he can lay his hand on from Sunday-School books to 
encyclopaedias. His mind is an exhaustless reservoir of 
unrelated facts. Psychopathic symptoms. Suffers at times 
from the idea of persecution, at which times he refuses to do 
any school work or even to talk. 

Effect of home " spoiling." 

Gordon. Age 5-7, mental age 6-6, 1 Q 116, first grade, 
quality of work 5. American, social status 3. Teacher's 
ratings: intelligence 5, dependability 5. 

Discrepancy: School work "inferior," although in grade 
corresponding to mental age. 

Gordon is the son of a minister and badly spoiled from 
petting and humoring. Attitude of condescension toward 
school work. Attention poor; easily fatigued; bad sex habits. 

Bernard. Age 7-1, mental age 7-B, I Q 108, first grade, 
quality of work 5 to 6. Portuguese, social status 5. Teach- 
er's ratings: intelligence 4, social adaptability 4, dependa- 
bility 5. 

Discrepancy: School work below average, although men- 
tal age is a half year above normal for grade. 



MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 105 

Bernard is a handsome child; the other five in the same 
family are very homely. Has always been petted and al- 
lowed to have his own way. 

Showing influence of physical defects. 

Roy. Age 15, mental age 14-8, 1 Q 98, seventh grade, 
^aality of work 6. American, social status 4. Teacher's 
ratings: intelligence 6, social adaptability 5, dependability 5. 

Discrepancy: Mental age a little above the average for his 
grade, but school work "inferior." 

Thin, anaemic, and sickly-looking. Almost hydrocepha- 
lic in appearance, with protruding eyes and open mouth. 
Very deaf and resents it. Fails to hear much of what is 
said during recitation, but will not admit it. At home has 
been alternately scolded and petted by a foolish mother, 
with the result that he has irritable and stubborn spells. 

Madeline. Age 7-10 (?), mental age 6-2, 1 Q 79 (?), first 
grade, quality of work 7. Portuguese, social status 5. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 6, social adaptability 6, de- 
pendability 5. 

Discrepancy: Although there is a question about Made- 
line's correct age, her mental age of 6 plus should enable her 
to do at least fair work in the first grade. She is making al- 
most no progress. 

Has suffered for years from chorea. Attends school until 
her movements become too uncontrolled and violent, stays 
at home for a few weeks, then returns to school. After a 
severe attack all she has learned in school seems to leave 
her. 

Love affairs and day-dreaming. 

Elmer. Age 14-2, mental age 14-3, I Q 101, seventh 
grade, quality of work 6. American, social status 4. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 5, social adaptability 3, de- 
pendability 4. 



106 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Discrepancy: Failing in work, but with mental age 
slightly above his school grade. 

The discrepancy in Elmer's case was only temporary and 
was caused by a particularly severe case of "puppy love." 
The girl moved away, love's young dream was broken, and 
Elmer's work came back to normal. 

Aldrich. Age 7-5, mental age 8-6, I Q 115, second 
grade, quality of work 6. American, social status 4. 
Teacher's ratings: intelligence 3, social adaptability 3, de- 
pendability 4. 

Discrepancy: Mental age average for grade but school 
work "inferior." 

A dreamer and not interested in school work. Poor 
foundation in first grade. Teacher's estimate of intelli- 
gence agrees with the I Q. Unusual vocabulary and in- 
formation. 



Summary. It appears that lack of self-confidence, 
personal traits which tend to cause over-rating or un- 
der-rating, mental inertia, physical defects, emotional 
instability, and psychopathic heredity are the most 
common causes of discrepancy between mental age 
and quality of school work. Unfavorable emotional 
attitude toward the teacher, the effects of which we 
have seen in other cases, did not appear in this series. 

Of the 34 pupils for whom a discrepancy was found, 
24 were boys, although as many girls as boys were 
tested. This would indicate either that teachers 
oftener misunderstood boys and of tener under-rate 
their school work, or that the school performance of 
boys is more easily influenced by physical or emo- 
tional defects than that of girls. 



BIENTAIrAGE STANDARD FOR GRADING 107 

It is also interesting to note that although the tests 
were almost equally divided between children of Ameri- 
can and foreign parentage (chiefly Portuguese), the lat- 
ter account for only 11 of the 34 discrepancies. It ap- 
pears, therefore, that the fact of foreign parentage does 
not greatly limit the usefulness of the Stanf ord-Binet 
scale as a measure of a child's educability . Several other 
Stanford students have made studies similar to that of 
Miss Preston's, involving in all nearly two thousand 
Binet tests. The data show convincingly that in the 
large majority of cases mental age offers a fairly accu- 
rate index as to the grade in which the child is fitted to 
do work of average quality. The index misses the 
mark to the extent of one grade in something like six to 
eight per cent of cases, to the extent of two grades in 
not more than one or two per cent of cases. In ninety 
cases out of a hundred it is accurate enough for all 
practical purposes. Even in those instances where it 
would be misleading, if taken as the sole criterion, 
the Binet test offers the best available starting point 
for reaching an understanding of the child's case. 

For example, J. F. had been for months doing very 
inferior work in the first year of high school. The 
teachers and principal were at a complete loss to un- 
derstand the case. Various remedies were tried, but 
without effect. The boy claimed that he was making 
every effort to do the work. Finally he was given a 
Binet test and was found to have a mental age well 
above that necessary for successful work in the ninth 



108 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

grade. The principal then called the boy to his office, 
explained to him what the test had revealed regarding 
his ability, and suggested that it was time for him to 
" quit fooling " and get down to earnest work. The 
result was an immediate and surprising improvement 
in his class marks. 

Sometimes the fault lies not so much in lack of ap- 
plication as in failing self-confidence. S. W., a boy of 
twelve years, had developed a sense of mental inferi- 
ority. His school work had gradually deteriorated un- 
til he was on the point of failing. Although it is ordi- 
narily not permissible to give a child his Binet test 
score, the principal wisely decided to do so in this case. 
The boy was so encouraged by the information that he 
went to work with a new spirit and soon ranked above 
the average in his class. 

Whether the child is working exactly up to his ca- 
pacity, or above or below it, the mental test is equally 
necessary. Ernest, the first of Miss Preston's cases, is 
doing fair work, although considerably below the nor- 
mal mental age for his grade. Unless this is known 
Ernest's efforts cannot be correctly appraised. La such 
cases as Roy or Madeline the teacher's attention is 
directed by the test to the possible influence of physi- 
cal defect upon school work. A discrepancy like that 
shown by Jennie and Donajd calls attention to the 
danger of over-rating the vivacious or under-rating 
the diffident child. 

The case of Margaret. The case of Margaret, re- 



MENTAL-AGE STANDARD FOE GRADING 109 

ported by Strong, offers a classical example of the use- 
fulness of mental tests in discovering the causes of 
poor school work. 1 

Margaret had just failed of promotion from the low- 
fourth grade. She was eleven years old, and tested at 
eleven by the Binet scale. With average normal abil- 
ity, according to the test, her school work was never- 
theless described by teachers as " hopeless." Her work 
in arithmetic and geography was especially poor. 
Prom January until May a small amount of special 
instruction was given her by one of Dr. Strong's stu- 
dents. Although the special instruction in arithmetic 
extended over only five months, and amounted to a 
total of only a few hours, Margaret's advancement 
was from third-grade work to fifth-grade work, as 
shown by the Courtis tests. 

The trouble seems to have been largely one of emo- 
tional attitude. When the special instruction began 
" she was afraid of everything; she could do very lit- 
tle, she knew nothing positively. She held her eyes 
down, carried herself shrinkingly, was a typical *f raid- 
cat.' We started with a thoroughly disheartened 
child, whose enthusiasm and hope were about dead, 
and who was being taught many things in school with- 
out knowing facts and principles which should have 
preceded these things. We taught her the funda- 
mentals of arithmetic, thus filling in all the gaps in her 

1 "The Development of Proper Attitudes toward School Work"; 
in School and Society, December 25, 1915, vol. n, pp. 926-34. 



110 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

knowledge of that subject up to the work of her class. 
In doing so we allowed her to see her learning curves. 
The unmistakable objective fact that she was learning 
made her realize that she could learn, aroused her in- 
terest, gave her fresh enthusiasm, and presently there 
resulted a transformed child. As we have seen, the 
transformation affected not only arithmetic, but all 
her studies, her carriage and walk, her social attitude 
toward others, her entire character. From being 
hopelessly at the bottom of her class she now has a 
settled determination to lead that class. From every 
indication it appears that the actually brighter chil- 
dren will have to work to keep ahead of Margaret." 



CHAPTER 

MJfiJN JL'AL TESTS OP SCHOOL LAGGARDS 

SINCE the publication of Ayres's book, Laggards in 
Our Schools, 1 numerous statistical studies have been 
made showing the large proportion of children who 
are one, two, three, or more years retarded, and ana- 
lyzing the factors which are responsible for the condi- 
tion. It has become a matter of common information 
that more than ten per cent of the cost of tuition is for 
repeated instruction, that about a fourth of the pupils 
leave school with not more than a sixth-grade educa- 
tion, and that the ranks of the vocationally incompe- 
tent are recruited largely from children who in school 
were over-age for their grade. Yet the problem re- 
mains. The number of school laggards has decreased 
but little, and their needs are almost as little provided 
for as before the campaign in their behalf began. 
The extent of the problem will be apparent from an 
examination of typical statistical findings. 

The number of over-age children. Professor 
Strayer by a uniform method secured data on the 
amount of retardation in 132 cities having a popula- 
tion of more than 5,000, and in 186 cities having a 

1 Ayres, Leonard P., Laggards in Our Schools. 1909. Russeft 
Sage Foundation; pp. 236. 



lia INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

population less than 25,000. 1 His most important 
results are embodied in Table 20, which show for boys 
and girls separately the average per cent found re- 
tarded or accelerated by various amounts. 2 









Over- 


Over- 


Over- 


Over- 


Total 


Total 




Sex 


Normal 
(per 
cent) 


age 
1 year 
(per 
cent) 


age 
2 years 
(per 
cent) 


age 
3 years 
(per 
cent) 


age 
4 years 
(per 
cent) 


over- 
age 
(per 
ceiit) 


under- 
age 
(per 
cent) 


25.000 
(132 cities) 


Boys 
Girls 


66 
60 


20 
18 


10 
9 


6 
3 


2 
1 


38 
82 


4 
4 


Under 25,000 
(18G cities) 


Boys 
Girls 


64 
68 


20 
18 


11 
8 


3 


2 
1 


38 
36 


4 
5 


Average for 
all cities 


















and both 
sexes 




67 


19 


9.5 


3.75 


1.25 


33.5 


&25 



TABLE 20. RETARDATION IN 318 CITIES. (Strayer) 

Table 20 shows that approximately one child in three 
is retarded, and only one in twenty-five accelerated. More 
than five per cent are retarded three years or more, and 
nearly fifteen per cent two years or more. 

The actual amount of retardation is even greater 
than the figures indicate, because of the liberal basis 
on which retardation was computed. The standard 
adopted by Professor Strayer was that used by Ayres, 
By this standard a child is considered as 'making nor- 
mal progress if in the first grade and not yet eight 

1 Strayer, G. D., Age and Grade Census of Schools and Colleges. 
Bull. 451, U.S. Bureau of Education, 1911; pp. 144. 

* Professor Strayer has omitted fractional per cents, so that the 
Combined totals do not quite equal 100 per cent. 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGABDS 118 

years old, if in the second grade and not yet nine years 
old, and so on* Although this is the standard on 
which retardation is nearly always computed, it allows 
a margin of a half year all along the line. Actually, if 
the child begins school by the age of six and one half 
years and makes normal progress, he will be in the 
second grade by the age of seven and one half, in the 
third by the age of eight and one half, etc. Counting 
retardation on this basis, the figures for Salt Lake 
City, in May, 1915, were as follows: 

Over-age 1 year 26.7 per cent 

Over-age 2 years 11. 2 per cent 

Over-age 3 years 3. 7 per cent 

Over-age 4 years or more 1.2 per cent 

Total over-age 43. percent 

That the retardation evil is not confined to large 
cities is shown by Strayer's figures for cities under 
25,000; also fey Berry's, Lurton's, and Morton's statis- 
tics for small towns in Michigan, Minnesota, and Ne- 
braska. For 55 cities and villages in Minnesota, the 
number of children retarded one year or more (Ayres's 
basis of reckoning) was 30.9 per cent, and in 41 graded 
schools of the same State the number was 83.9 per 
cent. 1 The figures for 96 cities and towns of Nebraska, 2 
taken together, are as follows: 

i Lurton, F. E., "Retardation Statistics from the Smaller Minne- 
sota Towns"; Psychological Clinic, 1911. m 

* Morton, W. H. S., "Retardation in Nebraska"; Psychological 
Clinic, December, 1912, and January 19, 1913. 



114 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Total pupils 25,449 

Retarded 1 year 16 .3 per cent 

Retarded 2 years 7.6 per cent 

Retarded 3 years 3.3 per cent 

Retarded 4 years or more 1.4 per cent 

Total retarded 28.6 per cent 

In 227 cities and towns of Michigan, Berry found a 
total of 24 per cent retarded, and 3.5 per cent retarded 
three years or more. 1 

The amount of retardation in rural schools seems to 
be even greater than in cities and towns. Gaylor 
found 53.6 per cent of the children in 139 rural schools 
of an Illinois county at least one year retarded, and 
28.4 per cent more than one year retarded. 2 

In 11 small cities in Illinois the number retarded 
two years or more was 20.7 per cent, as compared with 
28.4 per cent in the rural schools. 

Phelps found 28 per cent of 13,626 rural-school chil- 
dren in California retarded on the liberal standard 
used by Ayres. The number retarded three or more 
years was 2.5 per cent. 

The supposed causes of retardation. Retardation 
cannot be properly dealt with until its causes are un- 
derstood. The causes emphasized by Ayres and the 
majority of other investigators are physical defects, 

1 Berry, Charles Scott, "A Study of Retardation, Acceleration, 
Elimination, and Repetition in the Public Elementary Schools of 
225 Towns and Cities of Michigan"; Seventy-ninth Annual Report of 
Superintendent of Public Instruction (Michigan), 1915-16. 

* Gaylor, G. W., "Retardation and Elimination in Graded and 
Rural Schools"; Psychological Clinic, 1010, pp. 40-45. 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGABDS 115 

irregular attendance, late entrance, too high a stand- 
ard, and lack of flexibility in methods of promotion. 
The usual view is expressed in the following conclu- 
sions which Dr. Gulick drew from the investigation of 
Ayres: (1) "That the most important causes .of re- 
tardation can be removed "; (&) " that relatively few 
children are so defective as to prevent success in 
school or life." These assumptions are contradicted 
by the findings of all who have investigated the sub- 
ject by the use of mental tests. 

It is interesting to examine the causes which are 
most often mentioned by teachers and superintend- 
ents. In the case of 108 laggards in the Salt Lake City 
schools, the causes most often named were the follow- 
ing, given here in order of frequency of mention by 
teachers: poor home condition, physical defects, 
transferring from another school, retarded mental de- 
velopment, difficulty with the English language, lack 
of application, irregular attendance, laziness, late en- 
trance, and delinquency. 

Mental tests of these same 108 children showed an 
average mental retardation of three years. The large 
majority, indeed, were feeble-minded. Feeble-minded 
children do often come from poor homes, since often 
the parents of feeble-minded children are themselves 
feeble-minded. For the same reason, feeble-minded 
pupils shift frequently from one locality to another 
and attend irregularly. Because such children are 
feeble-minded, they enter late, show little applica- 



116 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tion in their school work, and tend to become delin- 
quent. 

Many similar questionnaire studies have been made 
and their findings are always essentially the same. 
All kinds of supposed causes of retardation are empha- 
sized except the one important cause inferior men- 
tal ability. Many teachers seem to hold views some- 
what as follows: (1) All children are either normal or 
feeble-minded; (2) those who are normal (i.e., not 
feeble-minded) should make standard school progress; 
(3) those who are feeble-minded will bear readily rec- 
ognizable ear-marks of their deficiency and will be un- 
able to learn anything. It is not generally understood 
that many feeble-minded children present a normal 
appearance; still less that some ten per cent of school 
children of perfectly normal appearance have a grade 
of intelligence which is about halfway between that of 
the moron and the average normal child. 

The real cause of retardation. Of Dickson's first- 
grade pupils who were eight years old or older, 68 per 
cent were below 80 I Q. Of Hubbard's fifth-grade 
pupils who were thirteen years old or older (i.e., two or 
more years retarded) 64 per cent were below 80 I Q. 
Of 50 over-age children tested by Williams in three 
California cities, 50 per cent had an I Q below 80, and 
38 per cent were below 75. Of 174 over-age children 
tested in the schools of " X " County, California, 61 
were below 70 1 Q, 106 below 81 and 153 below 90. In 
the case of the 1000 unselected children on whom the 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 117 



Stanford Revision was based, 97 were three or more 
years over-age on the Ayres standard. Of these, 
78 per cent were below 80 I Q. Conversely, nearly 
all of those who were below 80 I Q were one or 
more years over-age for the grade in which they were 
located. 

Dozens of such studies, larger or smaller, could be 
quoted. It is unnecessary, for all show the same 
thing: namely, that the over-age child is usually a dull 
child. Any one who desires additional proof need only 
test a large number of unselected children of a given 
chronological age, say twelve years, and note the 
school progress which those of various mental ages 
have made. Tables 21 and 22 show this for unselected 
children of eleven and twelve years. 



Mental 










Gradt 


9 








age 


I 


n 


in 


IV 


V 


VI 


vn 


vm 


Total 
















1 




1 
















8 


i 


4 














1 


2 




8 












2 


5 


6 


i 


14 










1 


6 


13 


2 




22 


13 








3 


12 


18 


1 




84 


12 






i 


2 


22 


12 






37 


11 






2 


10 


42 


6 






60 


10 






6 


15 


20 


1 






42 


9 




2 


3 


14 


6 








25 


8 


1 


5 


6 


2 










14 


7 


1 


1 


3 












5 




















1 


5 


1 
















1 


Total 


4 


8 


21 


47 


110 


56 


15 


2 


263 























TABLE 21. GRADE LOCATION OF 263 H-YEAR-OLDS BY STANFOBD- 

BINET MENTAL AGE 
These children were all eleven years old, chronologically. Correlation is .81 



118 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL GHILDBEN 



Mental 
age 


Grade 


I 


n 


m 


IV 


V 


VI 


VII 


vm 


Total 


18 ... 














1 
3 
7 
8 
11 
3 


1 
2 
4 
5 

4 

*i 


2 
5 
12 
17 
30 
29 
43 
46 
42 
22 
5 
3 
1 


17 














16 












1 
3 

10 
23 
21 
14 
4 


15 










1 

3 
19 
26 
26 

4 

1 


14 








1 


53 








12 








2 
5 
10 
9 
1 
1 


11 






i 

2 
7 
3 


10 






9 


1 


i 


g 


7 


2 
1 







5 


















Total 




















4 


i 


13 


29 


84 


76 


33 


17 


267 





TABLE 22. GRADE LOCATION OF 257 12-YsAB-OLDs BY STANFORD- 

BINET MENTAL AGE 
These children were all twelve years old, chronologically. Correlation is .856 

In the above tables, mental age 6 means 5-6 to 6-5, 
7 means 6-6 to 7-5, and so on. The tables show that 
intelligence is the chief factor determining the rate of 
a child's progress. It also shows that the test result 
gives a fairly reliable indication of the school grade in 
which a child of a given chronological age will be able 
to do the work. The correlation between mental age 
and grade is .81 for the eleven-year-olds, and .855 for 
the twelve-year-olds. 

The 257 pupils of the twelve-year group belong in 
the sixth grade by chronological age. However, 47 are 
in the fourth grade or below; i.e., two or more years 
retarded. All but three of these are mentally below 
twelve years, and all but 9 mentally below eleven. Of 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 119 

the 17 twelve-year-olds in the seventh or eighth grade 
(two years accelerated) all but one are mentally four- 
teen or above. Similarly for the eleven-year olds. 
Those who are accelerated show a high mental age, 
those who are retarded test low. 

Feeble-minded school children. We have seen that 
the large majority of over-age children are below aver- 
age intelligence. Such children may be classified as 
dull, border-line, or feeble-minded. While the feeble- 
minded group is much the smallest of the three, it 
gives rise to the most difficult educational and social 
problems. What these problems are can best be il- 
lustrated by the results of a typical survey of feeble- 
minded children in a small school system. That of 
" X " County, California, will serve the purpose. 1 

"X" County enrolls somewhat more than five 
thousand pupils in its public schools. Approximately 
twenty per cent of these attend rural schools having 
less than three teachers. The other eighty per cent 
are divided not very unequally among a half-dozen 
small cities. It was not possible to test all these chil- 
dren, nor was it necessary to do so in order to ascer- 
tain the approximate number of feeble-minded. The 
plan adopted was to test the suspected cases in all the 
rural schools of the county and in " Y" city, and at 
the same time to obtain data from all of the other 

1 Terman, Lewis M., Dickson, Virgil, and Howard, Lowery. 
The results are published in a bulletin of the California State 
Board of Charities and Corrections entitled Surveys in Mental 
Deviation, 1918, pp. 19-45. 



130 ESTTELUGENCE OF SCHOOL CHIIDBEN 

cities of the county of such a kind as would indicate 
whether the proportion of mental deficiency in those 
cities differed greatly from that found in the schools 
where mental tests were given. 

The first step was to obtain from the teachers in- 
formation which would make possible the location of 
suspected cases. At the request of the county each 
teacher furnished the following data for each pupil en- 
rolled in her class: name, age, grade, years in school, 
birthplace and occupation of parents, and ratings of the 
child for intelligence and quality of school work as very 
superior, superior, average, inferior, and very inferior. 

The inf onnation thus secured made it possible to 
eliminate eighty or eighty-five per cent of the children 
from consideration, because of their obvious normal- 
ity. In most classrooms it was necessary to test only 
ten to fifteen per cent of the children in order to avoid 
the risk of missing any defectives. In certain rooms, 
however, more were tested. The rule followed was to 
test every child who was rated by the teacher as seri- 
ously below average in either school work or intelli- 
gence, and to test all who were seriously over-age foi 
their grade, whatever the teacher's rating. Of the 
1464 pupils enrolled in the rural schools and " Y" City, 
174 (12 per cent) were tested. The resulting I Q's 
were as follows: 



IQ. 


40-49 


50-69 


60-69 


70-79 


80-89 


90-99 


100-109 


110-up 


HirWnl>elPT--m w.r 


3 


13 


45 


45 


48 


15 


4 


o 





















MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 



The majority of cases falling below 70 may be con- 
sidered feeble-minded. The range 70-79 is composed 
largely of border-zone cases. Those between 80 and 
39 are practically always normal, but dull; those be- 
tween 90 and 109 may be called average-normal. 

In the classification of the 174 suspects only those 
were placed below the border-zone group who were 
rather definitely feeble-minded. Correspondingly, 
those who were above suspicion of feeble-mindedness 
were placed above the border-zone group. On this 
basis 62 children, or 4.24 per cent of the enrollment of 
1464, were classified as feeble-minded, and 29 (1.98 
per cent) as border-zone cases. 

Grade progress of the feeble-minded. The school 
progress which the 62 feeble-minded children of " X " 
County were making is shown in Table 23. In 



AGE 


GRADE 


Total 




I 


11 


III 


IV 


V 


VI 


VII 


VIII 




6 


2 
















2 


7 


2 
















2 


8 


3 


1 














4 


9 


2 


1 














8 


10 


3 


3 














6 


11 


2 


1 


3 


1 










7 


12 




2 


1 


5 


2 


1 






11 


13 




2 


3 


3 


4 


2 






14 


14 








3 


2 


2 






7 


15 








1 




1 


1 




3 


16 














2 


1 


3 


Total 


14 


10 


7 


13 


8 


6 


8 


1 


62 



TABLE 23. AGE-GRADE LOCATION OP 62 FEEBLE-MINDED CHILDREN 



122 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

table, as before, age 6 means 5-6 to 6-5; age 7 means 
6-6 to 7-5, etc. 

From the facts set forth in the above table one could 
safely infer, even without the aid of mental tests, that 
a majority of these children are very inferior. More- 
over, for two reasons the age-grade distribution of the 



GRADE 


Mental 
Age 


I 


II 


HI 


IV 


V 


VI 


VII 


VIII 


Total 


4 


4 
















4 


5 


7 


2 














9 


6 


2 


2 


1 












5 


7 


1 


4 


3 


1 










9 


8 




2 


3 


8 


7 


4 






24 


9 








4 


1 


2 


2 


1 


10 


1O 














1 




1 


11 




















12 




















13 




















14 




















Total 


14 


10 


7 


13 


8 


6 


3 


1 


62 



TABLE 24. GRADE DISTRIBUTION OF 62 FEEBLE-MINDED CHILDREN 
BT MENTAL AGE 

children represents their mental status too favorably: 
(1) The younger feeble-minded have not yet had time 
to fall below grade. The feeble-minded of ages 6 and 
7, for example, are represented in the table as being up 
to grade. (2) The majority of the feeble-minded are in 
reality above the grade where they can do satisfactory 
work. This is seen in Table 24, which shows that 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 123 

these children who appear to be so badly retarded 
are, on the basis of mental age, greatly accelerated. 
While the average retardation on the basis of chron- 
ological age is 2.5 years, the average acceleration on 
the basis of mental age is 2.2 years. 1 

Some exceptionally difficult classes. The follow- 
ing schools will give an idea of the problems which 
face some of the teachers of " X " County: 

Rural School A. Pupils enrolled, 41. Of these, 18 were 
so seriously over-age and were rated so low by the teacher as 
to be classed as suspects. Of the 18 tested, 13 were feeble- 
minded and 3 of borderline intelligence. One family fur- 
nished 6 of the feeble-minded, another 4. The school enrolls 
one pupil in the first grade who is 10 years old and has been 
in that grade for four years. Two other pupils have com- 
pleted only two grades in the six years they have attended. 
They are now at the age of almost 18 years in the low third 
grade and are doing unsatisfactory work there. Another 
who is 16 years old and in the seventh grade has only nine- 
year intelligence. His intelligence is barely equal to fourth- 
grade work. 

Rural School B. Eighty-four pupils, 3 teachers. Of the 
12 children tested as suspects, 4 were feeble-minded, 5 were 
border-zone cases, and 3 were dull-normal. One family 
furnished a moron and a border-liner; another furnished a 
moron, a border-liner, and a dull-normal. A moron girl in 
this school has an insane mother. The girl is normally at- 
tractive in appearance and has reached the stage of ado- 
lescence. 

Room P, City " Y" This is a fourth-grade class enrolling 
39 pupils, 23 of whom are over-age for their grade. Five of 
these are from three to five years retarded. The ages of the 

1 Compare Tables 23 and 24 with Tables 28 to 35, pp. 159-162. 



124 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

89 pupils range from 9 years to 16 years. Of 5 suspects 
tested in this room, & were feeble-minded 'and 3 border-zone 
cases. Another, the lowest of all according to the teach- 
er's estimate, was absent and could not be tested. 

Although these three schools represent an extreme 
situation, there are undoubtedly thousands of teach- 
ers in the United States whose problem is made fully 
as difficult by the presence of backward and feeble- 
minded children. Sometimes the teacher's position is 
jeopardized because of her inability to give such pupils 
the expected mastery of school work. Often she is 
penalized if her percentage of failure is much higher 
than the average. Everywhere the emphasis is on 
keeping children up to grade, rather than on finding 
work which is suited to their abilities. 

How many children are feeble-minded ? In " X " 
County the proportion of feeble-minded children is 
not far from four per cent of the total enrollment. 
Fortunately this is an exceptional condition. The 
proportion usually found is between one and three per 
cent. In a partial survey of mental deficiency in the 
schools of San Luis Obispo, California, we found two 
per cent of the school children mentally defective. 
The Stanford tests of 1000 unselected children in five 
cities gave one per cent below 70 I Q, and two and 
one half per cent below 75 I Q. Probably one and 
one half per cent of the 1000 cases were feeble-minded. 
Among Dickson's first-grade children the proportion 
of mental deficiency was very considerably higher 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 125 

than this. Of Hubbard's 79 fifth-grade pupils, 4 
tested below 70 I Q. 

Other investigators in large number have found 
similar ratios of mental deficiency. After an excep- 
tionally thorough study of feeble-mindedness in the 
public schools of Oakland, California, Mrs. Hicks 
classifies three per cent of the children of that city 
as feeble-minded. Dr. Macfie Campbell's survey of a 
certain district in Baltimore resulted in a classifica- 
tion of three per cent as having " pronounced mental 
defect." Dr. Goddard, after a number of investiga- 
tions in eastern cities, including New York City, esti- 
mates that about two per cent of the school children 
in any average city will be found feeble-minded. 

Strikingly similar results have been found for sev- 
eral rural districts. Dr. Wilhelmine Key, in a study 
of a county in Northeastern Pennsylvania, finds 8.2 
per cent of the population mentally defective. In a 
survey of mental deficiency in Porter County, Indi- 
ana, by the United States Public Health Service, 
2185 children were given a Binet test. Approxi- 
mately one per cent were classified as feeble-minded, 
and another large group as doubtful. A similar in- 
vestigation was made by the United States Public 
Health Service in New Castle County, Delaware. 
Abbreviated mental tests were given to all the 8798 
children enrolled, and on the basis of these tests the 
seriously retarded cases were sifted out for a com- 
plete Binet test. As a result, 1.8 per cent were class- 



126 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

ified as being of institutional grade, not counting 
about a fifth of 1 per cent who were epileptic. We can 
conclude then that on an average two or three children 
out of a hundred are so poorly endowed in intellectual 
ability as to render their social competency a matter of 
extreme doubt. 

This figure should not be surprising, considering 
the number of children who are over-age three years 
or more. The following per cents on this point are 
typical: 

Over-age Over-age 

3 yean 4 years 

or more or more 

(per cent) (per cent) 

318 cities (Strayer) 5.25 1.5 

Salt Lake City (Survey Report) 4.9 1.2 

96 Nebraska cities and towns (Morton) 4.7 1.4 
227 Michigan cities and towns (Berry) 8. ? 

13,626 California rural school children (Phelps) 2.5 1. 

"X" County, California (Tennan) 5.2 2. 

Probably eighty per cent of those who are retarded 
four years or more, and fifty per cent of those 
retarded three years or more, are feeble-minded. 
Many others are feeble-minded who have not at- 
tended school long enough to become seriously re- 
tarded. In " X " County fifty-eight per cent of the 
feeble-minded were not more than two years over-age. 

Criteria of mental deficiency. Certain statements 
made in the preceding discussion may appear to be 
based on the assumption that all children may be class- 
ified as definitely normal in intelligence or definitely 
feeble-minded. No such assumption, however, has 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 127 

been intended. The distribution of mental ability is 
"continuous," by which is meant that there is no defi- 
nite line of demarcation between the imbecile, the 
moron, the dull, and the normal. Each group shades 
into the other by imperceptible degrees. The num- 
ber of individuals to be classified as feeble-minded 
will depend largely on the standard of classification 
used. When 75 1 Q is taken as the dividing line, the 
number of feeble-minded is about two and a half times 
as great as when 70 1 Q is taken. If 65 1 Q is used, 
the ratio of feeble-mindedness is greatly reduced. 

The different standards employed have given rise 
to serious disagreements among psychologists as to 
the proportion of feeble-mindedness in various social 
groups. The disagreement comes from the fact that 
the term " feeble-mindedness " is currently used in 
two very different senses. In one sense it refers to 
the possession of no more than a certain degree of men- 
tal (chiefly intellectual) capacity, as measured by some 
objective scale. This is the psychological definition. 
As commonly employed, the term " feeble-minded " 
has reference primarily to those who, because of in- 
herent or early acquired mental weakness, " cannot 
compete on equal terms with their fellows," or " can- 
not manage themselves or their affairs with ordinary 
prudence." This is the social criterion. These two 
criteria, the psychological and the social, cannot be 
used interchangeably for the reason that ability to get 
on in the world depends upon many things besides 



128 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

absolute mental capacity, such as health, looks, bear- 
ing, muscular strength, inherited wealth, sympathetic 
friends, economic and industrial conditions, the pre- 
vailing level of intelligence in those with whom the 
subject must compete, etc. However, experience 
shows that, on any reasonable standard as to what 
constitutes social competency, the outlook for chil- 
dren who test below 70 1 Q is anything but favorable. 
Feeble-mindedness and dullness not curable. 
The classification of school children as " feeble-minded " 
or " dull " can only be valid in case it is found that the 
individual who tests low at an early age will continue 
to test low in succeeding years. As is shown in chap- 
ter IX, re-tests of children after long intervals indi- 
cate that a child's brightness or dullness remains 
surprisingly constant. 1 The following re-tests are 
typical: 

F. C. t middle-grade imbecile, tested as follows: 
Age 8-6, mental age 4-0, 1 Q 47; 
Age 10-8, mental age 5-4, 1 Q 50. 

V. J. 9 high grade moron, tested as follows: 

Age 8-6, mental age 6-0, 1 Q 71, grade 1; 
Age 9-4, mental age 6-9, 1 Q 72, grade 2; 
Age 11-6, mental age 8-4, 1 Q 73, grade 3; 
Age 12-4* mental age 8-10, 1 Q 72, grade 3. 

H. V., dull normal, tested as follows: 

Age 11-0, mental age 8-10, 1 Q 80.5, grade 4; 
Age 14-11, mental age 11-8, 1 Q 78, grade low 7. 

1 See Figures 21 'and 22 in chapter EC, showing growth curves of 
dull and feeble-minded children. 



MENTAL TESTS OP SCHOOL LAGGABDS 129 

Grade expectancy of the feeble-minded. Because 
of the tendency of the I Q to remain constant, it is 
possible to forecast with a reasonable degree of ac- 
curacy the highest grade in which a dull or feeble- 
minded child will ever be able to do satisfactory work. 
It has been found that after the chronological age of 
fifteen or sixteen years the mental age increases little 
if at all. Making allowance for minor changes of a 
few points in I Q we are able on this basis to make 
such predictions as the following: 

The child who tests at 60 I Q will in all probability 
never go beyond the mental age of nine or ten years 
(sixty per cent of 16 years = 9.6 years). Such a child 
will never be able to do good work above the third or 
fourth grade, although by the age of sixteen he is 
likely to be found in the fifth or sixth grade, promoted 
there because of age and size. 

The child who tests at 70 1 Q may ultimately reach 
a mental age of about eleven years, which corresponds 
roughly to median fifth-grade ability. Such a child by 
the age of sixteen may be able to do fair work in the 
sixth grade, after much repetition, but is likely to be 
carried by the lockstep of the school a couple of grades 
beyond this. However, we have found no I Q of 70 
in the high school. 

An I Q of 80 means an ultimate mental age of ap- 
proximately twelve and one half years. A child of the 
80 class will at best be able, by the time mental 
growth has ceased, to do fair or average work in the 



130 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

seventh grade. A mechanical system of promotion 
and sympathy for his retarded condition may be ex- 
pected to land him in the eighth grade, or if he re- 
mains in school long enough, even in the first or sec- 
ond year of the high school. However, such a child 
will never be able to do the work of the average high 
school with any degree of satisfaction. 

The child who tests at 90 is near enough the average 
to make normal or almost normal progress through the 
eight grades, although there is some likelihood of his 
incurring retardation of a half year to a year. Such a 
child, if persistent, may also be expected to graduate 
from' high school, although the difficulty of making 
normal progress there is somewhat greater than in the 
grades below the high school, due to the fact that his . 
competitors in the high school are selected pupils. 

Those testing between 70 and 80 (about five per 
cent of all children) compose the group which offers 
the most difficult educational problem. The majority 
of this group are not sufficiently subnormal to warrant 
their commitment to an institution, nor are they able 
to profit normally from the regular work of the school. 
They furnish the bulk of those who by the age of 
twelve or fifteen are two to four grades retarded. As 
noticeably over-age pupils, they are the object of. 
every one's sympathy. Because of the universal desire 
to keep the retardation figures low, they are over- 
promoted to such an extent that they are rarely able 
to master their lessons. Tables 29 and 30 (pp. 159, 160) 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGARDS 131 

show the grade location of children testing between 70 
and 79. Practically the only pupils in these tables do- 
ing satisfactory work were those who were in a grade 
corresponding closely to the mental age. Those whose 
grade location corresponded to chronological age were 
almost never doing work of average quality for the 
grade. 

Limitations of the special class. The remedy which 
has been most often urged for the ills of the over-age 
child is the special class. Although one or more such 
classes are to be found in nearly all the larger cities, 
the number is never sufficient to take care of more 
than a small fraction -of the children who should at- 
tend them. To provide special teachers enough for all 
the seriously over-age children on the usual basis of 
twelve or fifteen pupils per teacher is quite out of the 
question. The most that the best cities have done is 
only a beginning. Even if the special class were as 
effective educationally as its most enthusiastic cham- 
pions claim, it would still be an impossible solution of 
the problem because of the prohibitive cost. More- 
over, the question inevitably arises whether the ulti- 
mate returns to society would not be greater if any 
funds available beyond those necessary for the sup- 
port of the regular classes were used to provide special 
opportunity for children who are gifted. 

One way to reduce the cost of special class instruc- 
tion, which at present is about three times as high 
as in the regular class, is to establish central schools 



132 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

exclusively for backward children. When the pupils 
are graded according to ability and type of defect, a 
class of twenty-five presents a no more difficult prob- 
lem than a class of fifteen which enrolls children who 
are feeble-minded, epileptic, incorrigible, or physically 
handicapped as well as those who are merely back- 
ward. 

Vocational training for backward children. How- 
ever, the administrative aspects of the problem are 
secondary to the pedagogical. The important task for 
the school is to provide the kind of instruction suited 
to the capacity of inferior minds. Whether this is done 
by grouping the regular class into sections according 
to ability, or by providing special classes, graded or 
ungraded, does not greatly matter. The danger inhe- 
rent in the present costly mode of attack is that we 
may exhaust all our good will on a handful of feeble- 
minded, and leave practically untouched the infinitely 
larger and more important problem of providing the 
dull with a kind of training which will make them so- 
cial and industrial assets. The feeble-minded, in the 
sense of social incompetents, are by definition a bur- 
den rather than an asset, not only economically but 
still more because of their tendencies to become delin- 
quent or criminal. To provide them with costly in- 
struction for a few years, and then turn them loose 
upon society as soon as they are ripe for reproduction 
and crime, can hardly be accepted as an ultimate 
solution of the problem. The only effective way to 



MENTAL TESTS OF SCHOOL LAGGAEDS 133 

deal with the hopelessly feeble-minded is by perma- 
nent custodial care. The obligations of the public 
school rest rather with the larger and more hopeful 
group of children who are merely inferior. 

It should be clearly understood that individuals 
of inferior intelligence are not necessarily undesirable 
members of society. Indeed, the world has abundant 
use for them. A large proportion of the tasks in the 
modern organization of industries can be as well per- 
formed by individuals of the 70 or 75 I Q class as by 
those of superior intelligence, and with more satisfac- 
tion in the performance. Mentality of eleven years is 
ample for ordinary kinds of unskilled labor, and many 
of the semi-skilled trades are within the reach of those 
who test a year or two higher. 

To make the most of this grade of ability, however, 
it must be trained. (Fox children who test below 75 
or 80 I Q, genuine vocational training should largely 
replace the usual curriculum of the upper grammar 
grades. 1 ? Nothing beyond a certain amount of relief to 
the regular teacher is gained by segregating them in 
special classes, unless their course of study is at the 
same time vocationalized. Merely the introduction of 
a little basketry or other " handwork " does not serve 
the purpose. Although there are occasional happy ex- 
ceptions to the rule, the average special class gives the 
backward child little that will be of direct service to 
him in the world. Often, indeed, it gives him little or 
nothing beyond the scope of the regular curriculum. 



184 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The following case is a typical illustration of the 
school's problem in dealing with over-age children: 

M. is a Portuguese boy of 16 years. We first tested him 
when he was 10 years of age. His I Q was 74. He was in 
the third grade, where his work was very unsatisfactory. We 
tested him again when he was 14 J years old and in the sixth 
grade. At this time his mental age was 10-5 and his I Q 72. 
As would be expected, his work in the sixth grade was very 
inferior. By mental age he belonged in the high-fourth or 
low-fifth grade. Recently M. left school at the age of 16 
years, after promotion to the seventh grade. It is certain 
that had M. remained in school indefinitely, he would never 
have been able to master the work required for graduation 
from the eighth grade. The school which he attended (a rural 
school) had done all it could for him by the usual methods. 
His teachers were unusually capable and conscientious. He 
had been given a fair trial at the regular curriculum and, in 
spite of his best efforts, for M. is an industrious lad, he 
could not make headway with it. He goes out into the world 
with no further equipment from his schooling than the abil- 
ity to read, write, and do the fundamental operations in 
arithmetic. Some children who test as low as M. would be 
rated as feeble-minded. No psychologist would so classify M. 
Intellectually inferior he certainly is, but as far as his intelli- 
gence goes, it is sound. About ordinary affairs his judgment 
is dependable, and he is steady, industrious and anxious to 
make good. There are probably many lands of semi-skilled 
work in which he could succeed. For none of these has he re- 
ceived any preparation. After nine years in school, he faces 
the world with no vocational asset but his God-given brawn. 
There are approximately a million children like M. in the 
public schools of the United States. 1 

1 For other descriptions of dull and feeble-jninded children see.' 
Tennan, Lewis M., The Measurement cf Intelligence (Houghton 
Mifflin Co., 1916), pp. 82-94. 



CHAPTfcK IX 

THE I Q AS A BASIS FOR PREDICTION 

Prediction the essence of science. The essential 
characteristic of scientific knowledge is that it can be 
used as a means of predicting what will happen when 
certain conditions are given. Primitive man lived 
largely in a world of apparently chance events. The 
progress of enlightenment is measured by man's ability 
to find law and order in what seems to be but a chaos 
of happenings. The sciences of physics and chemistry, 
for example, have made possible thousands of predic- 
tions as to what will inevitably occur in the interaction 
of forces and elements, given such and such conditions. 
The passage of a current of electricity through water 
according to a certain procedure always gives hydro- 
gen and oxygen. A bridge constructed of given mate- 
rials according to given specifications will be able to 
withstand a certain definite amount of strain which 
can be foretold with reasonable accuracy. 

The sciences that have to do with living matter, the 
organic sciences, have developed more tardily than the 
inorganic. The introduction of the scientific element 
into economics, sociology, education, and psychology 
is still more recent and far less complete. ^Education, 

en -an,~ ein 



basis. Teachers have been too content to believe 



136 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDEEN 

in "miracles," instead of searching for the order 
and inevitable sequence which will make prediction 
possible. Some teachers even seem to prefer empiri- 
cism to science, and to derive satisfaction from the 
fact that child nature contains so many unknown 
quantities. To such persons the proposal to develop 
a science of mental growth which would enable us to 
forecast a child's future may even seem repugnant. It 
runs counter to the deep-seated and blind faith that 
anything is possible for any child; that the material 
with which education works is uniform; and that 
processes alone count. 

Compared to the obvious variety of the world of 
adults, with its healthy and its sickly, its geniuses and 
its incompetents, its moral leaders and its criminals, 
the world of cradle or schoolroom does indeed present 
a homogeneous aspect. But the uniformity is one of 
appearance only. Mental tests are showing that the 
variety is there, and that it bears certain definite rela- 
tions to the variety found among adults. To the ex- 
tent that differences among children are measureable, 
and to the extent that these differences tend to per- 
sist, prediction is possible. It is evident, therefore, 
that one of the most fundamental problems of psy- 
chology is that of investigating the laws of mental 
growth. When these laws are known, the door of the 
future will in a measure be opened; determination of 
the child's present status will enable us to forecast 
what manner of adult he will become. The entire 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 137 

program of educational treatment which should be 
accorded a given child hinges on such possibility of 
prediction. 

Limitations of prediction in psychology. It must be 
admitted, however, that the laws governing the devel- 
opmentof many mental traits are still little understood, 
and that tools for their exact measurement are far from 
satisfactory. We shall concern ourselves here only 
with the prediction of future intellectual status. The 
Standardization of the Binet scale on the basis of age- 
norms makes it a suitable instrument for the investiga- 
tion of mental-growth curves. By applying it re- 
peatedly to the same children, we can find out whether 
constancy or irregularity rules. Prediction hinges on 
the question whether a child who is found by the test 
to be a given per cent above or below the mental level 
normal for his age continues to be accelerated or re- 
tarded to the same degree. The answer is found in the 
extent to which the I Q remains constant. 

Before presenting our data on re-tests there is one 
point that should be made clear; namely, that minor 
discrepancies in the results of successive tests do not 
necessarily imply corresponding irregularity of mental 
growth. Mental measurements are not and never will 
be made with the exactness which is possible in the 
physical sciences. " Accidental " and imponderable 
factors are always present to invalidate the result in 
some degree. This would be true even if the measuring 
scale itself were perfect, for the child himself is a more 



138 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

or less variable factor. His performance in the tests 
may be influenced by conditions of health, the previous 
night's sleep, fatigue, timidity, anxiety, grief, attitude 
toward the examiner, or other special conditions. 
When the different tests of the same individual are 
made by different examiners, we have the additional 
disturbing influence of the personal equation in giving 
and scoring the tests. 

Some have argued that such accidental influences 
largely invalidate the results of mental testing. Such 
persons take it for granted that an average child may 
test like a dullard if he is fatigued or sleepy, and that 
similar factors beyond our control may reduce the 
performance of a genius to the level of mediocrity. The 
question is one of fact. The results of re-tests show 
that, while theoretically all these influences may be 
present in some degree, their combined influence is in 
most cases small. 

Constancy of I Q as shown by re-tests. Re-tests 
have been given to 315 children in the vicinity of Stan- 
ford University. To 46 of these children three or more 
tests have been given. In case of a child tested several 
times, each test has been compared with each of the 
others; for example, the first test with the second, 
third and fourth separately, the second test with the 
third and fourth separately, and the third test with 
the fourth. This gives in all 485 I Q comparisons. 

The re-tests were not made as a separate investiga- 
tion, but are such as have accumulated as a result of 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 139 

various mental test studies carried on by many differ- 
ent Stanford University students over a period of 
years. For this reason the tests were made under an 
extraordinary variety of conditions. Thirty-three ex- 
aminers contributed to the total number of tests. 1 
Only twenty-eight per cent of the earlier and later 
tests were given by the same individual. There was 
no uniformity as regards time of day, place of testing, 
freedom from distractions, etc. 

The intervals between tests ranged from one day to 
seven years and classify as follows: 

Less than 1 year 86 

1 to S years 138 

3 to 5 years 85 

More than 5 years 127 

The ages of the subjects, counted at the time of the 
earlier of two compared tests, were as follows : 

3 to 5-11 99 

6 to 8-11 139 

9to 11-11 134 

12 to 14-11 55 

Above 15 8 

i Irene Cuneo 148 

Terman Ill 

ELG.Childs 99 

Laura Herron 46 

J.H. Williams 40 

L. S. Stockton 37 

Dorothy Albrecht 38 

Mary B. Chamberlain 34 

Lowery Howard 18 

W.M. Proctor 17 

R.S.Roberta 15 

Blanche Cuminings. . 11 

21 examiners* 1 to 8 each 78 



140 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The effect of the varying ages, also of wide intervals 
between tests, would presumably be to reduce correla- 
tions. The normal child who is reSxamined after an 
interval of five or six years earns his second mental age 
on other tests of the Binet scale than those taken in 
the first examination. 

H the tests in the one or the other part of the scale 
are not properly standardized, there will be a dis- 
crepancy between the two I Q*s due to this extraneous 
factor. We have therefore treated the various ages 
and intervals separately. Since the tendenqy for I Q 
to increase or decrease might be expected to vary ac- 
cording to the brightness of the child, the I Q groups 
of 89 or below, 90 to 109, and 110 or above, have 
also been treated separately. 

Table 25 shows the frequency of various amounts of 
I Q change in the different groups of children classified 
(1) according to interval between the tests, (2) accord- 
ing to age at the time the earlier test was given, and 
(8) according to brightness. Increases in I Q of later 
as compared with earlier tests are tabulated as + 
changes, decreases as changes. 

Table 25 shows that it makes little difference 
whether the child was bright, average, or dull, how 
long an interval separated the tests, or what the age 
of the child was at the earlier test. The majority of the 
changes are for all groups relatively small. The salient 
facts for the entire series of re-tests may be summa- 
rized as follows: 



THE I Q AND PBEDICTION 



141 



Change 
inlQ 




Interval 


Age at first test 


I Q Group 


T-t 

9 

! 

?i 

2 

"i 
"s 

2 

1 
2 
5 

5 

7 
9 
20 
14 
9 
18 
23 
18 
23 




1) 
i 


2) 

1 

2 


3) 

l 


(4) 

l 

i 


5) 

<o 
5 
eo 

1 


C) 

os 
S 

CO 

t 


7) 

S3 
2 



* 


8) 

9 
i 


9) 

<y 

M 

3 

-1 

i 

< 


0) 

0? 

M 

8 
I 


1) 
0? 

M 

8 
s 


12) 

<y 

M 



3) 

O? 

H4 

8 
t 

I 


Above - 


-20 
-20 
-19 
-18 
-17 
-16 
-15 
-14 
-13 
-12 
11 
10 
- 9 
- 8 
-7 
- 6 
- 5 
-4 
-3 
-2 




- 


2 




1 


- 


1 


1 I 


i 


1 





1 





1 

1 
1 
1 
1 

3 
1 
3 
1 
2 
6 
3 


i 

2 


1 

1 


"i 


1 
1 
2 


"i 


1 
1 


i 


2 

3 
1 


1 


'i 


1 
1 

2 
1 


. 


1 
2 
2 

2 
3 

7 
6 

4 

6 
6 


2 

3 

1 
4 

2 
2 
3 
8 
5 


"i 
i 
i 

7 
5 
1 
1 
7 
4 
R 


2 
1 

1 
3 
3 
6 
3 
3 
9 
4 
3 


1 

2 

*3 

1 
3 
4 
2 
1 
5 

10 


2 

*8 

1 

8 
5 
3 
5 
13 
9 
6 


i 

i 

i 

3 
2 
1 
3 
2 
2 


3 
2 

4 
6 
6 
3 
4 
7 
11 
9 
15 


1 

1 

*2 
1 

8 

1 
5 
6 
6 

4 


i 

*2 

1 
2 
6 
4 
4 
6 
6 
3 
4 


2 

2 

's 

1 
1 

2 
5 

7 


"i 

2 

i 
"2 

*2 


__ i 

I 

1 
-11 
-12 
-1 
-1 
-1 
-1 
-1 
-1 

-2 
Below -20 


3 

6 
4 

2 
8 
5 
1 
2 
2 


6 
6 
5 

6 
7 
6 
3 
5 
1 
1 


6 
2 
9 

1 

3 

2 
1 

1 


3 
5 
14 
13 

e 

1] 
9 
5 
3 
4 


2 
6 
5 
3 
2 

6 
3 
2 

1 


5 
5 

18 
11 

7 
14 
8 
7 
3 
3 


7 

7 
4 
3 

7 
4 

1 
' 


2 
3 

4 
4 
2 

4 
1 
2 
3 


6 
16 
8 
10 
7 
14 
8 

e 

2 


7 
10 
13 
4 
6 
8 
8 
3 
3 
4 
8 


7 
8 
4 
3 
2 
7 
3 

*i 

1 


5 

4 
6 
2 
5 
2 
2 
2 
1 


4 
1 
3 
1 

"i 
l 


20 
34 
25 
17 
15 
29 
19 
12 

7 
4 

7 
2 
3 
2 
S 

2 
7 

435 


3 



3 

's 

C 
2 


i" 


i 


1 
1 


2 
3 


1 
2 


4 
1 


1 
2 
1 


5 

4 


2 
1 
1 


*2 
1 


i 


i 

2 


.. 


3 


.. 








2 
1 









i 


1 


1 


1 




1 




2 


1 







1 
3 


2 


j 


3 


1 


1 
1 





1 
1 


1 
( 


'4 


*2 


31 


Total.. 


86 


128 


84 


127 


99 


139 


134 


63 


183 


147 


104 


81 



TABLE 25. SHOWING I Q CHANGES FOR CHELDEEN 
AJTBR DOTTEBENT INTEBVALS, FOB CHJLDBEN OP 

*** *"" -"*" ^ TT ^^ T\--rvni xv 

AGES, 



142 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

(l)-Tke central tendency of change is represented by an in- 
crease of 1.7 in I. Q ; 

() The middle fifty per cent of changes lies between Hie 
limits of 3.3 decrease and 5.7 increase ; 

(8) The probable error of a prediction based on the first test 
is 4.5 points in terms of I Q. 

A more impressive way of expressing the agreement 
between earlier and later tests is by means of a correla- 
tion array, as is done in Table 26 for all the tests taken 
together. The correlation is .933. Those who ranked 
high in the earlier test ordinarily ranked high in the 
later, the average remained close to average, the low 
remained low. 

Personal equation of the examiner. If an intelli- 
gence scale yielded consistent results only when used 
by the same examiner its value would be extremely 
limited. On the other hand, if results secured by dif- 
ferent examiners in testing the same subjects give a 
high correlation, a most important requirement of 
validity has been met. Separate tabulation of those 
cases in which the earlier and later tests were made 
by different examiners yielded a correlation of .929, 
almost exactly the same as that for all the cases com- 
pared without regard to examiner. The following are 
typical illustrations : 

Re-tests were made by Mir. and Mrs. Stockton of 
forty children who had been previously tested at vari- 
ous ages by various examiners. When the records were 
compared with the original tests, it was found that in 



MrlN ;C*3 



i-IO*C4t*t*O 



. .r-l i-l-^O lO^tCQ t-l 



.H iHCOOON 









TABLE 26. 



II 



144 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

twenty-five of the forty cases the I Q had not changed 
more than four points, and in thirty not more than six 
points. The correlation with the earlier tests was .94. 

Twelve children of Fresno, California, who were ex- 
amined by Dr. J. H. Williams in 1915 were reSxamined 
by Miss Blanche Cummings. Dr. Williams was trained 
at Stanford University, while Miss Cummings had 
learned the Stanford Revision procedure by studying 
the directions in The Measurement of Intelligence. The 
results of the twelve repeated tests are shown in 
Table 27. 

The coefficient of correlation between the tests of 
Dr. Williams and those of Miss Cummings, made over 
three years apart, is .96, Spearman method. Not only 
do the tests agree with each other; the school progress 
of the child agrees with both. The average or su- 
perior children make normal or more than normal 
progress; the inferior children less than normal pro- 
gress. Other groups re-tested by different examiners 
have given similar results. 

Influence of interval between tests. Table 25 
shows that it makes little difference whether the com- 
pared tests are separated by an interval of a few 
months or several years. The central tendency of 
change and the proportion of changes included in a 
given range remain much the same. The only excep- 
tion is that tests separated by more than five years 
show a greater tendency toward increase of I Q than 
is the case with shorter intervals. This is probably a 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 



145 



Examiner 


Age 


Mental age 


1Q 


Grade 


Williams 
Cununings 


11-1 

14r-3 


8-4 
11-0 


75 

77 


4 

6B 


W 
C 


12-0 
16-1 


12-3 
15-6 


102 
103 


6A 
11 High School 


W 
C 


11-10 
15-0 


11-6 
13-8 


97 
91 


6B 
I High School 


W 
C 


11-4 
14-5 


13-5 
16-8 


118 
116 


6B 
I High School 


W 
C 


9-2 
12-4 


6-10 
8-S 


75 
70 


2 
3 


W 
C 


8-8 
12-0 


11-0 
15-6 


122 
129 


5A 

8A 


W 
C 


11-1 
14-0 


10-3 
13-5 


92 
96 


5 
n High School 


W 
C 


9-0 
12-2 


9-2 
12-8 


102 
104 


4B 

7A 


W 
C 


8-5 
11-fl 


9-9 
13-6 


116 
117 


3 
6B 


W 
C 


11-0 
18-9 


7-0 
9-2 


64 
67 


3 
5B 


W 
C 


9-4 
12-6 


6-10 
8-8 


73 
69 


3B 
5A 


W 
C 


9-0 
12-11 


9-1 
12-0 


101 
93 


2A 
5A 



TABLE 27. SHOWING AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE EARLIER AND 

LATER TESTS OF TWELVE CHILDREN 
Second test after an interval of three years. (Correlation .964) 

spurious result due to the fact that in case of inter- 
vals of this length the first test was made by a form 



146 INTEmGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

of the Binet scale differing slightly from that used in 
the later tests. 

It is rather surprising that children profit little in a 
re-test from their experience in the first test. One 
would naturally expect a considerable improvement 
due to their feeling more at ease and to the opportu- 
nity to think over their earlier mistakes and correct 
them. However, this advantage yields the child (on 
the average) only two or three points in I Q even 
when the test is repeated within a few days. 1 

Influence of brightness and dullness on the con- 
stancy of the I Q. There is a widespread popular 
opinion that bright children usually fail to hold 
their own, and that the dull are likely to improve 
with increase of age. Psychologists have more often 
expressed the view that it is the dull who fail to 
hold their own, and that the superiority of the bright 
probably increases. Table &5, which gives the I Q 
changes separately for the bright, average and dull 
(above 110, 90-109, and below 90), shows that the 
I Q remains almost equally constant for the three 
groups. The central tendency of change for the bright 
is + 0.7; for the average, + 3.0; and for the dull, 
+ 1.2. The greatest tendency to gain appears with 
the average group, and the next greatest with the dull. 
The differences, however, are practically negligible. 

1 For further data on re-tests of kindergarten children see the arti- 
cle by Irene Cuneo and Lewis H. Terman, Pedagogical Seminary, 
1918. 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 147 

When those above 125 I Q and those below 80 I Q 
were treated separately, the central tendency of 
change was found to be 0.5 for the former, and 
+ 1.2 for the latter. The very dull actually gained a 
trifle more than the very bright. However, we have 
only thirty-one repeated tests for the low group to 
compare with eighty for the high group, and the low 
group contains very few cases below 60 I Q. It is 
possible that feeble-minded children testing below 60 
are less likely to hold their own than those of milder 
degree of defect. As far as the school is concerned 
this possibly may be ignored, since there are relatively 
few in public school classes who test this low. 

On the other hand, the I Q as determined by the 
Stanf ord-Binet (or any other intelligence scale yet de- 
vised) cannot indefinitely maintain its constancy in 
the case of children who are exceptionally superior. 
The child of fourteen years who tests at 139 has passed 
all the tests in the scale. Thereafter his I Q drops 
gradually to 122, which is the maximum possible for a 
subject of sixteen years who passes all the Stanford- 
Binet tests. Similarly, the child who tests at 161 has 
reached his maximum I Q at the chronological age of 
twelve years. This does not mean that his develop- 
ment ceases at this time, but merely that the Stanford' 
Binet does not measure it. Children who test at 180 
are measured fairly accurately up to the age of fifteen 
years, or nearly as far as chronological age is counted. 
Since only about one child in a hundred rates as high 



148 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

as 130, the scale is seen to offer a reasonably satisfac- 
tory measure for ninety-nine per cent of unselected 
children, and also for the remaining one per cent 
except during the later years of mental growth. 

Limits of accuracy in prediction of mental develop* 
ment. From the frequency of the various amounts of 
change in I Q, as shown in Table 25, we can compute 
the average error which will be made in predicting the 
mental age or the I Q which a child will have at any 
later age. Speaking roughly, fifty per cent of the I 
Q*s found at a later test may be expected to fall within 
the range between six points up and four points down. 
Half of this distance, or five points, is the probable 
error of an I Q for purposes of prediction. 1 Deviations 
of one, two, three, four, or five times the probable er- 
ror may be expected to occur with the frequency given 
in the second column below. 2 The frequency actually 
found is shown in the third column. 

Deviations as great as Theoretical Actual 

or greater than frequency frequency 

(per cent) (per cent) 

Onetime P. E. ( 5 points) 50 50 

Two times P. E (10 points) 27.76 16.6 

Three times P. E. (15 points) 4.3 6.2 

Four times P. E. (20 points) 7 1.85 

Since the central tendency of change is toward an 

1 Actually the P. E. is somewhat less than this, namely 4.5. 

2 See any textbook on statistical method; e.g., Rugg, H. O., Sto- 
tistical Methods Applied to Education (Houghton Mifflin Co., 1917); 
pp. 391. 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 149 

increase of a little more than 1 point, and since the 
changes above and below this are distributed fairly 
symmetrically, we may say, roughly speaking, that 
the chances that an I Q will either increase as much as 
six points or decrease as much as four points are one 
in two; that it will either increase as much as twelve 
points or decrease as much as eight points, one in five; 
that it will either increase as much as eighteen points 
or decrease as much as twelve points, one in twenty; 
that it will either increase as much as twenty-four 
points or decrease as much as sixteen points, one in a 
hundred and forty. 

The above statements regarding the probability of 
different degrees of change occurring include devia- 
tions both above and below the central tendency of 
change. The chance for a deviation to occur in one di- 
rection isonly half as great. For illustration, the chance 
that a child who tests at 85 will later test as high as 91 
is one in four; that he will later test as high as 97, one 
in ten; that he will later test as high as 103, one in 
forty, etc. Similarly, the chance that he will drop to 81 
or below is one in four; that he will drop to 77 or be- 
low, one in ten; that he will drop to 73 or below, one in 
forty, etc. 1 

It is evident, therefore, that the I Q is sufficiently 
constant to make it a practical and serviceable basis 

1 The chances of given deviations occurring vary so slightly for 
children of different ages at the time of the first test, also so slightly 
for intervals of different length between tests, that for practical pur- 
poses these factors may be left out of account. 



150 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

for mental classification. At the same time it is not 
infallible. A single test does not give us certainty, but 
merely a high degree of probability. While the I Q 
it yields is extremely valuable in the tentative classifi- 
cation of children, it needs to be checked up by sup- 
plementary data and by re-tests. In certain types 
of pathological subjects the I Q may undergo large 
fluctuations. Epileptics, for example, frequently de- 
teriorate from something like normality to middle- 
grade deficiency in the course of a few years.' 

Mechanical errors as a source of discrepancy. So 
dose is the agreement in most cases between earlier 
and later tests that when a discrepancy of more than 
twelve or fifteen points is found it warrants a strong 
suspicion that an incorrect age has been given in one 
of the tests, or that arithmetical error has been made 
in adding credits to find mental age or in dividing 
mental age by chronological age to find the I Q. 
Mistakes of this kind are a more dangerous source of 
error than the personal equation of the examiner. 
Arithmetical errors can be greatly reduced by making 
all computations twice, a precaution which we con- 
sider absolutely necessary. The avoidance of errors 
due to incorrect age is by no means easy. Chil- 
dren in the lower grades occasionally do not know 
their age. Sometimes the age recorded in the school 
register is incorrect because of falsification by parent. 
The seriousness of this source of error is shown by the 
following illustration: 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 151 

K. N. tested at the mental age of 5-2. The age given was 
6-6, and the I Q was therefore computed as 79. This indi- 
cated a degree of dullness almost amounting to borderlinity. 
However, when the child was re-tested two years later the 
chronological age was given as only 7-6, instead of 8-C. 
Investigation disclosed the fact that 7-6 was correct and 
that the parents had falsified the age to secure earlier en* 
trance. The mental age earned at the second test was 7-2 
and the I Q 95. Correction of the age at first test raised the 
former I Q of 79 to 94, practically the same as that earned 
in the second test. 

Do adenoids affect the I Q ? It is very generally 
believed that adenoids seriously retard mental devel- 
opment, and that their removal is nearly always fol- 
lowed by a marked intellectual awakening. If such 
were the case the effect of removal should be to in- 
crease considerably the I Q. Among our re-tested 
children we have records of twenty-seven who under- 
went an operation for removal of adenoids or tonsils 
in the interval between tests. Comparison of the I Q's 
of earlier and later tests showed a central tendency 
toward a gain of two points and a fraction. There 
were ten losses and seventeen gains, but no gain larger 
than fourteen points, and only two larger than ten 
points. Although these results are too scanty to war- 
rant a conclusion, they suggest that adenoids and 
diseased tonsils may give a child an exaggerated ap- 
pearance of dullness. They are a chronic source of 
toxins which .seriously impair physical vitality, and 
their removal probably adds to the child's vivacity 



152 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

and to his interest in school work. This effect would 
easily be mistaken for real intellectual improvement. 
There are enough reasons why adenoids and diseased 
tonsils should be removed, apart from any effect on 
thelQ. 

Investigations on a larger scale should be made to 
determine the effects on intelligence not only of ade- 
noids, but also of such factors as malnutrition, chorea, 
loss of sleep, fatigue, hookworm, 1 malaria, etc. 



AGE 
9 10 u a 



o' 

< 

t\ 

1: 



FlG. 20. MBNTAlXJBOWTHCUBVBSASTH]reWOUIJ)BBIPlQwinBB 

CONSTANT 

1. Mental-growth curve as it would be for a child who continued to test at 100 1 Q 

2. Mental-growth curve as it would be for a child who continued to test at 183 1 Q 
S. Mental-growth curve as it would be for a child who continued to teat at 671 Q 

1 An investigation made by Strong of the effects of hookworm 
disease on mental and physical growth did not afford very positive 
results, as re-tests were not given. 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 



153 



Curves of mental growth. If we had a perfect scale 
for determining the mental age level, and if the I Q re- 
mained absolutely constant, the " curves " of mental 
growth would be a straight line from birth to the point 
of mental maturity. The mental-growth curves for 
typically dull, average, or bright children would then 
be as represented in Figure 20. It will be observed 
that each of the hypothetical growth curves in Fig- 
ure 20 maintains a certain relative distance from the 
heavy line representing the average-normal (I Q 100). 



AGE 



7* 



FIG. 21. ACTUAL MENTAL-GROWTH CURVES OF CHILDREN OF 
VARIOUS DEGREES 03 BRIGHTNESS 

1. Mental-growth curve of superior child No. 17, Chapter XI 
8. Mental-growth curve of superior child No. 11, Chapter XL 

4. Granddaughter of an inventor and related to John Wesley 

5. Son of a man of international fame 

13. Member of a feeble-minded family of "X" County, California, which has long 
burdened t^ community with delinquents fypd paupers 



154 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHTLDBEN 



The child's brightness or dullness is not at all indi- 
cated by his mental age, but only by the ratio of mental 
age to chronological age. The tendency is to remain 
a certain per cent above or below the normal. 

We do not have an infallible measuring scale, and 
even if we had we should hardly expect the I Q (i.e., 
the ratio of mental age to chronological age) to main- 
tain perfect constancy. Accordingly, mental-growth 
curves can only be expected to agree roughly with 
those shown in Figure 20. Figure 21 shows actual 
mental-growth curves found by repeated tests of chil- 
dren of various degrees of brightness. 

AGE 



t i 9 4 9 



r ft 9 x> 



FIG. 22. MENTAL-GROWTH CURVES OP BRIGHT AND DULL CHILDREN 

2. Superior child No. S3, Chapter XI 

4. Described in The Measurement qf Inlelligaue, page 97 

6. Enrolled in a special class. In the third grade at 12} years 

7. Enrolledinaspecialclass. In the fifth grade at age of 16, but unable to do the work 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 



155 



Figure 22 contrasts two groups of children. Those 
below the normal line are all either feeble-minded or 
border-line cases, most of whom were attending spe- 
cial classes and none of whom was ever able to pro- 
gress above the seventh grade. The lowest is an imbe- 
cile, barely able at the age of twelve years to read in 
the first reader. The bright group is as much above 
average intelligence as the dull group is below, but 
they attract far less notice in school. 

Figure 23 illustrates how children in the same fam- 
ily ordinarily test close together. The mental-growth 
curves above the normal line represent two brothers 



AGE 



ft ft 14 



ti 



X 



^ 



X 



X 



-7 



FlG. 23. MBNTAl>GROWTHCimyBSINTwoCONTRASTmGFAMIIJia 

1. , and S. Two brothers and one water of the W. fainfly 
4, 5, 6, and 7. Three brothers and one sister of the P. family 
The cross represents a single test 
The children of the two families attend the same school 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 



157 



brother and sister, the broken lines, 3 and 4, two 
brothers in another family. The two crosses indicate 
single tests of two brothers in a third family. In each 
case the contrast in school success was as marked as 
the contrast in the growth curves. 

Figure 25 shows four exceptionally irregular curves 
of mental development. No. 1 and No. 4 represent 
conditions of mental disease (dementia precox and epi- 
lepsy) . Normal children do not often show as marked 
irregularity as that found in No. 2 and No. 8. 

The I Q as a basis for predicting school progress. 
The relative permanency of the I Q enables us to pre- 

AGE 



FIG. 25. FOTJB EXCEPTIONALLY IBBEGULAB GBOWTH CURVES 

1. A boy who at the age of ten showed symptoms of dementia jmscox 
. A normal boy cause of the irregularity not known 
8. An adolescent boy of marked instability and neurotic symptoms 
4. An epileptic girl, showing typicel epileptic deterioration 



158 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

diet with some degree of approximation the mental 
level a child will attain by a given age. We have also 
seen that it is the mental level, more than anything 
else, which determines a child's proper location in the 
school grades. If schools were careful to grade children 
according to mental age it would be possible, knowing 
a child's I Q, to predict in what grade the child would 
be found at any given time in the future. 

We have seen, however, that schools do not grade 
children as nearly by mental age as they should. While 
children of low I Q do become retarded, they are nev- 
ertheless usually found in a grade considerably above 
that corresponding to mental age. On the other hand, 
children of very superior I Q, while they are likely to 
be promoted somewhat beyond average children of 
their age, are usually found in a grade considerably 
below that corresponding to mental age. 

Notwithstanding this constant tendency of teachers 
to promote children by age rather than by ability, the 
I Q nevertheless offers a fairly serviceable basis for 
predicting a child's later school progress. Tables 28 to 
35 show the grade which children of various degrees of 
brightness had attained at various ages. The heavy 
squares running diagonally across each figure show 
the grades in which a child of 100 I Q normally be- 
longs at the various ages. In all these tables, age 
seven includes children between six and one half and 
seven and one half years old, age eight those between 
seven and one half and eight and one half, etc. 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 



159 



ii 



SCHOOL GRADE 

ra iv v vi 



VII Vm Total 



7 
8 
9 

I 10 
- 11 

312 
1 13 

14 
|l5 
16 
17 
18 
Total 


7 
















7 


5 
















6 


9 


4 














18 


9 


5 














14 


4 


5 


5 












14 


8 


4 


8 


2 










12 




4 


5 


9 


5 


2 






25 




8 


6 


6 


10 


8 






27 






1 


2 


7 


7 


1 




18 








1 


2 


4 


3 


1 


11 










1 


1 


2 


2 


6 












1 


1 




2 


87 


25 


20 


19 


25 


18 


7 


3 


154 



TABLE 28. GRADE PROGRESS AT 50-69 I Q 



n 



SCHOOL GRADE 
ra iv v vi 



VII VIII Total 



7 
8 
9 
J10 

*H 

212 

u 

Sl3 

o 

114 
015 
16 
17 
18 
Total 


6 

















6 


5 


3 














8 


8 


5 


1 












14 


2 


5 


2 












9 


1 


3 


2 


1 










7 




1 


4 


8 


1 


1 






10 






2 


6 


1 


3 






12 








2 


3 


4 


2 


1 


12 








1 


2 


3 


2 


2 


10 










1 


3 


3 


2 


9 














1 


1 


2 




















22 


17 


11 


18 


8 


14 


8 


6 


99 



TABLE 29. GRADE PROGRESS AT 70-74 I Q 



160 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

SCHOOL GRADJB 



7 
8 
9 

1- 
311 

012 
|l3 
8 14 
15 
16 
17 
Total 


I II HI IV V VI VII Vm Total 


6 
















6 


10 


8 














13 


7 


5 














12 


1 


6 


8 












10 


1 


8 


7 


4 










15 




1 


5 


6 


5 








17 






2 


7 


10 


6 


1 




26 








1 


8 


4 


2 


1 


11 










2 


2 


6 


2 


12 












1 


1 


6 


8 














2 


2 


4 


26 


18 


17 


18 


20 


18 


12 


11 


184 



TABLE 30. GRADE PBOGEESS AT 75-79 1 Q 



SCHOOL GRADE 
m iv v vi vn 



Total 



7 

8 

e 9 

^10 

gll 

12 
g!3 
J 14 
^15 
16 
17 
Total 


16 
















16 


18 


6 














19 


7 


15 


2 












24 




4 


9 


1 










14 






5 


9 


6 








20 






1 


4 


14 


1 






20 








8 


16 


9 


1 




29 










7 


5 


5 


5 


22 












2 


8 


8 


IB 














1 


5 


6 
















1 


1 


86 


25 


17 


17 


48 


17 


10 


19 


184 



TABLE 31. GRADE PBOGEESS AT 80-84 I Q. 



THE I Q AND PBEDICTTON 161 

SCHOOL GRADE 



n m 



IV 



VI VII Vm Total 



n 

8 

I 9 
I 10 

in 
312 

Il3 
|l4 
15 
16 

Total 


47 


7 














54 


13 


48 


11 












72 


1 


15 


46 


8 










70 






9 


35 


15 








59 






1 


11 


40 


9 


1 




62 








2 


22 


27 


3 


1 


55 










3 


21 


30 


7 


61 












4 


7 


26 


87 












1 


2 


11 


14 
















2 


2 


61 


70 


67 


56 


80 


62 


43 


47 


486 



TABLE 32. GRADE PBOGRBSS AT 95-104 I Q 



SCHOOL GRADE 
HI IV V VI 



VII VIII Total 



7 


11 


11 


1 












23 


8 
B 9 




6 


11 


2 










19 






4 


10 


3 








17 


in 

s 12 

014 
15 
16 

Total 






1 


8 


11 


5 






25 










9 


16 


3 




28 












3 


10 


7 


20 












1 


3 


5 


9 
















5 


5 






































11 


17 


17 


20 


23 


25 


16 


17 


146 



TABLE 33. GBADE PROGRESS AT 120-129 I Q 

Inspection of the above tables will reveal the follow- 
ing facts: 

1. The lower the I Q, the greater the degree of re- 



162 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

SCHOOL GRADE 
i n nr iv v vi vn vin Total 



7 

i: 

3 10 

o 11 
12 

I 13 

e !4 
15 

Total 


2 


5 


5 












12 




1 


6 


3 










10 






1 


5 


4 








10 








1 


3 


2 


1 




7 








1 


1 


4 


6 


2 


14 












2 


6 


8 


11 














I 


8 


4 
















2 


2 




















2 


6 


12 


10 


8 


8 


14 


10 


70 



TABLE 34. GRADE PROGRESS AT 130-139 1 Q 

SCHOOL GRADE 
I H III IV V VI VII VIII Total 



7 


1 


2 


1 












4 


5 8 




1 


2 


2 


8 


2 






15 


H 9 

gio 
gll 






1 


8 


5 


2 


8 




14 










11 


4 


3 


1 


19 










2 


8 


5 


2 


12 


12 














8 


2 


5 


|13 














1 


2 


8 


14 




















15 




















Total 


1 


8 


4 


5 


26 


11 


15 


7 


72 



TABLE 35. GRADE PROCESS AT 140-170 1 Q 

tardation. As we go from the 50-69 1 Q group to the* 
95-104 group, the grade location gradually improves 
until it approximates the normal. 

2. The I Q groups above 100 show a greater degree 
of acceleration the brighter the group. It will be noted, 



THE I Q AND PREDICTION 168 

however, that the acceleration of the bright group is 
not quite as great as the retardation of the dull. For 
example, the 120-129 children are not as far above 
the heavy squares as the 70-74 and 75-79 children are 
below. The same holds for the 180-139 group as 
compared with those of 60-69 1 Q. 

3. If the mental age of a given child in one of the 
retarded groups is computed, it will usually be found 
that the child is less retarded than he ought to be. 
When the mental age of a child in one of the bright 
groups is computed, it will be found that the child is 
less accelerated than he ought to be. 

4. The typical child of 60 or 65 I Q tends to remain 
in the first grade until the age of ten or eleven years, 
and not to reach the fifth grade until the age of four- 
teen or fifteen years. By this time he has a mental level 
of only about nine years and is not able to do the 
school work satisfactorily above the third or fourth 
grade. 

5. The typical child of 75-79 I Q reaches the fifth 
grade by the age of thirteen years, and if he remains in 
school is likely to be found in the eighth grade by the 
age of sixteen or seventeen. Nearly always, however, 
his grade location is higher than the mental age would 
warrant. 

6. Children of 80-84 I Q usually remain two years 
in the first grade, and complete the eighth grade, if they 
complete it at all, one or two years behind schedule 
time. 



164 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

7. On the other hand, children of 12O-129 I Q are 
usually found either one or two grades accelerated. 
Nearly all of this gain, however, is made in the first 
year or two of school life. After the first year, they 
are held to the one-grade-one-year pace of average 
children. Even so, the central tendency is for them 
to complete the eighth grade at the age of thirteen. 

8. The situation is slightly but not proportionately 
better for the I Q group of 130-139. Children of 140 to 
170 I Q, however, are likely to become three or four 
years accelerated and to reach the eighth grade by the 
age of eleven or twelve years. Wherever children of 
the higher I Q groups are located, their work always 
presents a striking contrast with that of children of 
the 60, 70, or 80 I Q class who are several years their 
seniors. 



CHAPTER X 

SOME FACTS ABOUT FIFTY-NINE SUPERIOR 
CHILDREN * 

Educational neglect of superior children. The at- 
tention of teachers is constantly being called to the 
large number of defectives among school children, and 
to the educational and social problems to which they 
give rise. For the intellectually superior, however, 
the ones upon whose preservation and right education 
the future of civilization most depends, no special pro- 
vision is made. In the average school system then* 
very existence, even, is ignored. Yet, as we have 
seen, they are just as numerous as the dull and 
mentally defective. The latter attract attention by 
their inability to do the work and by their malad- 
justment to school discipline. Children of superior 
ability are often submerged with the masses simply 
because they are not recognized. 

Another thing that has blocked the educational 
path of the gifted child is the widespread belief that 
intellectual precocity is pathological, that exception- 
ally bright children are usually unhealthy and likely 
to become physical or mental wrecks if their intellec- 
tual interests are at all stimulated. Recently, how- 
ever, the truth of the traditional belief has come more 

1 Written with the assistance of Margaret Hopwood Hubbard. 



166 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

and more under suspicion. Such studies as have been 
made of gifted children have not disclosed the patho- 
logical symptoms popularly supposed to accompany 
exceptional intellectual ability. On the contrary, 
wherever the experiment has been tried of provid- 
ing such children larger and richer opportunities the 
results have been surprisingly gratifying. , When fa- 
vored with extra promotions they make good in the 
higher grade without injury to health; when given 
the advantage of a broader and richer course of study 
their minds expand and take the wide swath as easily 
as they had taken the narrow one. 

Instances of this kind coming to our attention 
from time to time led us some years ago to undertake 
the more or less systematic study of exceptionally su- 
perior children. With the help of Margaret Hop wood 
Hubbard and other Stanford University students, we 
have secured Binet tests of some eighty California 
children having an I Q above 135. All but a few 
of these tested 140 or above. Fifty-nine of the group 
were subjected to a rather careful study, which will be 
summarized briefly in this chapter. 

Selection of subjects. The study was limited 
chiefly to children who tested 140 or above in order to 
secure subjects whose intelligence would be as far above 
average as that of typical feeble-minded children is 
below average. The fifty-nine subjects composed 
two groups, which will be designated as the Alameda 
Group and the Miscellaneous Group. 



FACTS ABOUT SUPEBIOR CHILDREN 167 

The Alameda Group included twenty-four subjects 
selected by systematic search throughout the public 
schools of Alameda, California. The method of se- 
lection was as follows: (1) The age-grade location was 
found for all the children in the grades below the high 
school; (2) the pupils were rated by their teachers for 
intelligence on a scale of five: very superior, superior, 
average, inferior, and very inferior; (3) all the children, 
who were under-age two or more years by the Ayres 
standard, and who were rated by their teachers as 
above average in intelligence, were provisionally se- 
lected for study; (4) the principals and teachers were 
asked to recommend others of exceptionally superior 
intelligence who could not qualify on the above rules. 1 

In this way seventy children of the five thousand 
enrolled in the schools of Alameda were provisionally 
selected and given a test with the Stanford-Binet 

1 The fifty-seven Alameda pupils who were tested but fell below 
the standard of brightness set for the study, included twenty-four 
boys and thirty-three girls, with I Q's as follows: 

Boys Girls 

130-135 9 8 

125-129 4 8 

120-124 2 4 

115-119 1 6 

110-114 3 4 

105-109 1 3 

100-104 2 

9fr-99 2 

Total 24 33 

The two who tested below 100 were each one year over-age for 
their grade. The teacher's judgment was in error because age had 
not been taken into account. 



168 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHDLDBEN 

scale. Of these, twenty-two were found to have an in- 
telligence quotient of one hundred and thirty-seven or 
above. In addition, one subject of 135 1 Q and one of 
136 I Q were included for special reasons, making a 
total of twenty-four in the Alameda Group. 

The Miscellaneous Group consisted of twenty-five 
children who had been located by the writer and by 
various Stanford students in the half-dozen years 
preceding the present study. 

Supplementary data. The intelligence tests were 
used primarily to identify the superior children, and 
to measure their degree of superiority. Much more 
time was given to interviews with parents and teach- 
ers in the work of gathering items of information 
listed in an eight-page " information blank " for par- 
ents, and a somewhat shorter one for teachers. All 
of the homes were visited by Mrs. Hubbard except a 
few of the more distant ones. The interviews lasted 
usually one to three hours. Similar interviews were 
held with the child's teacher. 

For the Alameda Group, duplicate office records 
were secured from the school principals, showing each 
child's school marks from the time of entering school.; 
A number of educational measurements were also 
available for comparative purposes in the case of this 
group, including tests in addition, subtraction, multi- 
plication, division, spelling, and arithmetical reasoning* 

The information blank for teachers called for (1) 
data on school progress; () ratings of the quality of 



PACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 169 

the child's school work in each subject (usual scale of 
five) ; (3) indications of exceptional ability, and a state- 
ment as to whether the ability appeared to be special 
or general; (4) ratings on twenty mental, moral, and 
physical traits (scale of five used for each trait) ; (5) 
facts regarding play, reading, physical defects, nerv- 
ousness, eccentricities, moral peculiarities, etc. 

The information blank for parents called for data on 
(1) nationality, education, and occupation of parents; 
names and ages of all the children, with rating of each 
for intelligence; (2) ratings of the superior child on the 
same twenty traits which were rated by the teacher; 
(3) facts regarding walking, talking, dentition, nour- 
ishment in infancy, early growth, illness, etc.; (4) spe- 
cial data on adenoids, tonsils, eye and ear defects, 
headaches, digestive trouble, nervousness, timidity, 
amount and quality of sleep; (5) regularity of school 
attendance, attitude toward school, home study and 
reading, use of time after school, evenings and vaca- 
tions, private instruction, etc.; (6) indications of supe- 
rior ability, amount and kind of formal instruction in 
the home, vocational ambitions; (7) occupation, edu- 
cation, and ability of parents and grandparents, and 
data regarding uncles, aunts, cousins, and distin- 
guished or defective relatives. 

The traits which were rated both by parents and 
teachers were: studiousness, power to give sustained 
attention, persistence, social adaptability, leadership, 
initiative, evenness of temper, emotional self-control, 



170 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 



physical self-control, will power, cheerfulness, cour- 
age, sense of humor, obedience, conscientiousness, de- 
pendability, intellectual modesty (lack of vanity), 
unselfishness, general health, and general intelligence. 
Intelligence quotients. The I Q's of the fifty-nine 
subjects were distributed as follows: 

Boys 



IQ 

180-184. 
175-179. 
170-174. 
165-169. 
160-164. 
155-159. 
150-154. 
145-149. 
140-144. 
185-139. 



Total. 



1 


2 
2 
1 
2 
8 
5 
11 
9 

41 



Girls 





1 

1 


6 
5 
5 

18 



The average I Q was 149*7 and the median 145. 
Only eighteen were as high as 150. l 

1 Since this study was completed, twenty-one other children have 
been located in California who test above 140 1 Q, bringing the total 
number to eighty. As many of these as possible will be followed up 
from year to year until adult life. The twenty-one new cases not in- 
cluded in the present study are as follows: 
Sex Age Grade IQ 
7-10 5 174 



G. 


JA 

10-1 


B. 


9-0 


B. 


8-8 


B. 


11-4 


G. 


a-6 


G. 


6-8 


G. 


9-5 


B. 


4-0 


B. 


10-5 


B. 


6-8 



6 
6 
5 
8 


5 

6 
1 



167 
160 
157 
156 
154 
151 
151 
150 
146 
144 



Sei 


: Age 


Grade 


IQ 


G. 


10-2 


5 


148 


G. 


7-6 


1 


148 


G. 
B. 


4-4 

KM. 


Egn 
5 


145 
144 


B. 


13-8 


8 


143 


G. 


6-9 


1 


142 


G. 


10-7 


5 


141 


B. 


8-3 


4 


141 


B. 


8-6 




141 


B. 


9-0 




141 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 171 

The lowest of our subjects is probably equaled or ex- 
ceeded in brightness by not more than 1 child in 100; 
the highest by not more than 1 in 10,000 or 0,000. 
The highest I Q found in Alameda's enrollment of 
5000 was 158. An I Q of 140 probably occurs with an 
average frequency of about 1 in 200, or one half of one 
per cent. It was found nineteen times in Alameda's 
enrollment of 5000, giving a ratio of a little less than 
one half of one per cent. 

The average I Q for the children of the different 
ages was as follows: 

Age Number of Average 

^ Subjects I(? 

3 1 162 

4 2 143 

5 2 144.5 

6 2 144 

7 4 158 

8 4 147 

9 10 147.4 

10 10 154.5 

11 11 14S.4 

12 6 141.8 

13 4 140 ' 

14 3 139.3 

There were few subjects above the age of twelve 
years, because the search was confined almost entirely 
to the grades below the high school. The diminishing 
number below eight is explained by the difficulty 
teachers find in recognizing the superior child until he 
has attended school two or three years. 

Of the fifty-nine, only eighteen were girls. Of the 



172 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

eighteen testing 150 or above, only two were girls. The 
six highest were boys. During the progress of the work 
effort was made to ignore the possibility of sex differ- 
ences. Of the seventy Alameda children selected for 
testing, more than half were girls. 1 Of the six girls test- 
ing above 145 I Q, all but one (a child of three years) 
have special ability in literary or artistic lines; the 
fields in which women have met the most pronounced 
success. 

Age-grade location. Counting a child at-grade who 
is in the first grade between the ages of 6-6 and 7-5, in 
the second grade between the ages of 7-6 and 8-5, etc., 
we have the following distribution: 

On baas of Number Percent 

real age 

Retarded 

At grade 4 8.5 

Advanced one year 14 29.8 

Advanced two years 14 29.8 

Advanced three years 9 19.2 

Advanced four years 6 12.8 

Judged by appearances, the above showing is re- 
markably good, for 61.8 per cent of the children are 
advanced two years or more. On the basis of menial 
age, however, the showing is strikingly different 
Taking as our standard for the first grade the mental 
age of 6-6 to 7-5; for the second grade, mental age 
7-6 to 8-5, etc., we have the following: 

1 Among the twenty-one superiors discovered after this studj 
was made, there was a larger proportion of girls. One of these testec 
at 174. 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 173 



On bads of 
mental age 

Retarded five years 


Number 
3 


Percent 
6.4 


Retarded four years 


10 


21.3 


Retarded three ye^r s .... 


12 


25.5 


Retarded two years , 


11 


23.4 


Retarded one year , 


8 


17.0 


Afr-grade 


. . . 8 


6.4 


Advanced 





0.0 



Reckoning on the basis of actual age, we find an 
average acceleration of slightly more than two years; 
on the basis of mental age, an average retardation of 
about .6 years. The story is plainly told in Tables 
36 and 37. 

i n m rv v VT vn vni ix x" xi xn 



6-7 to 7-6 




1 


1 




1 
















7-7 to 8-6 








1 


1 
















8-7 to 9-6 






1 


2 


4 


2 


2 












9-7 to 10-6 










4 


1 


S 


1 










10-7 to 11-6 










1 


2 


4 


2 


1 








11-7 to 12-6 














2 


8 










12-7 to 13-6 














1 


2 










13-7 to 14-6 
















1 


1 




1 


1 



TABLE 86. SHOWING HOW SUPERIOR CHILDREN ABE ABOVE-GRAB* 
ON THE BASIS OF CHRONOLOGICAL AGE 

Teachers' ratings on qualify of school work. The 
children were graded by their teachers on a scale of 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (very superior, superior, average, inferior, 
and very inferior), in each of the school subjects. 
Each child's ratings in the several subjects were then 



174 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

i ii in iv v vi vii vin ix x xi xn 



6-7 to 7-6 


























7-7 to 8-6 


1 
























8-7 to 9-6 




1 






















9-7tolO-6 






1 




















10-7 to 11-6 


























11-7 to 12-6 








2 


2 
















12-7 to 13-6 






1 




3 


1 


3 












13-7 to 14-6 








1 


2 
















14-7 to 15-6 










3 


3 


2 


1 










15-7 to 16^ 












1 


3 


2 










16-7 to 17-6 












1 


1 


8 


1 








17-7 to 18-6 














2 


2 


1 








18-7 to 19-6 
















1 






1 


1 



TABLE 97. SHOWING HOW SUPEBIOB CHILDREN ABB BELOW- 
GBADB ON THE BASIS OF MENTAL AGE 

averaged. The lowest average rating for any child 
was 2.91, or slightly better than "average" for all chil- 
dren. The highest was 1.16. The 461 ratings in the 
individual subjects were distributed as follows: 

Number Per cent 

1, very superior '227 49.3 

2, superior 133 28.8 

3, average 80 17.4 

4,inferior 15 3.2 

5, very inferior 6 1.3 

The six ratings as low as 5 (** very inferior "), were 
distributed one each in music, spelling, nifl,n\ifl,1 train- 



FACTS ABOUT SUPEBIOR CHILDBEN 175 

ing, and language, and two in writing. The fifteen rat- 
ings of 4 (" inferior "), were distributed as follows: 
music three, spelling one, manual training two, drawing 
four, nature study one, writing four. There are no 
grades below 8 (" average ") 9 in arithmetic, reading, 
history, geography, or deportment. 

Although these children averaged about two years 
above grade, the ratings show that they were doing 
work of a decidedly superior quality. No wonder, 
since they were still located in grades below their 
mental levels. There is every reason to believe that 
they would continue to do superior work if they were 
promoted to the grades where they belong by mental 
age. Three had been so promoted, and their average 
school marks were 1.44, .08, and .55. Some of these 
.children and also many other superiors whom we have 
tested have received promotion as a result of our 
recommendations, and we have yet to find a child 
who failed to make good. 

Educational measurements. In connection with 
another investigation 1 all of the public school children 
of Alameda above the fourth grade were given the 
Courtis Arithmetic, Ayres Spelling, and Stone Rea- 
soning tests. Eighteen of the twenty-four of Alameda 
were tested at the same time. 

The tests revealed the following interesting facts: 

1. The average scores of these superior children 
were higher than the average of any of the grades of 
* By Mr. 0. S. Hubbard. 



176 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

the city with the exception of the high-eighth. In 
addition and spelling they even excel the high-eighth. 
. Of the six pupils in the low-fifth grade, four were 
above the eighth-grade median in addition and sub- 
traction, two above the eighth-grade median in multi- 
plication, two in spelling, and one in division. 

3. One girl, aged 10-2, low-fifth grade, I Q 148, 
practically doubled the score of the high-eighth grade 
in addition, subtraction, and multiplication, and did 
considerably better than the eighth grade in division 
and spelling. 

4. Two of the six pupils in the low-fifth grade made 
scores in arithmetical reasoning about 50 per cent 
higher than the city's median for the high-seventh 
grade. 

5. In arithmetical reasoning, the subject which 
more than any other taxes the real mental ability of 
the pupils, the average score of the eighteen pupils was 
nearly two grades above the city average for the 
grades in which they were located. 

Entering age and rate of advancement Of the 
forty-nine subjects who had entered school and for 
whom data were available, seven entered at five years, 
twenty-four at six years, seventeen at seven years, and 
one at eight. 

Of the seven children who started to school before 
six years, two skipped half of the first grade, two 
others the third, one the third and seventh, one the 
fourth, and one skipped two grades not designated. 



PACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 177 

Of the twenty-four who entered at six, four skipped 
the first grade, and seven others skipped half of the 
first grade. Of the seventeen entering at seven, only 
seven had attended the first grade, three having en- 
tered at once the second grade, five the third grade, 
one the fourth grade, and one the sixth grade. 

It is often argued by teachers that children who are 
allowed to skip grades will later be handicapped by 
gaps in their knowledge. Our data show how little 
truth there is in this view. Nearly all of these children 
had skipped one or more grades, yet their school work 
was in most cases so superior as to suggest the desira- 
bility of additional promotions. Gaps in training are 
quickly filled. Of course, it would be better still if 
school children were so classified as to permit superiors 
to make maximum progress by continuous -rapid speed 
without the necessity of skipping. 

According to the statements of the parents, of the 
fifty who were in school, thirty had been allowed by 
their parents " to go their own pace." Thirteen had 
been mildly encouraged by their parents to make rapid 
progress and to excel in their school work. Seven 
had been purposely held back by the parents, a few 
because of ill health, others in the belief that preco- 
cious mental development is something to be pre- 
vented as far as possible. In only two cases had there 
been any serious attempt in the way of intensive mind 
culture at an early age. 1 " Only" children would ordi- 
1 See children No. 34 and No. 39, chapter xi. 



178 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

narily be expected to get more than their share of early 
instruction, but only seven of our fifty-nine cases 
were only children, and only two of these had an I Q 
above 143. 

Age of learning to read. Learning to read consider- 
ably in advance of the normal age of six is a significant 
indication of superior ability. It is ordinarily not un- 
til the mental age of six years that children are able 
to learn to read as first-grade children are normally 
expected to do. The child of four years who learns 
to read as readily as the average child of six, will 
almost certainly test as high as 150. Several of the 
children who did not learn to read before six wanted 
to learn earlier, but were discouraged from doing so. 
The one who learned to read latest, between seven 
and eight, was said to have shown a desire to learn to 
read at four years. 

Records were obtained for forty-nine, as follows: 

Between 2 and 3 years, 1, or 2 per cent 



3 and 4 





6 


" 12 


4 and 5 


< 


7 


" 14 


5 and 6 


(t 


17 


" 35 


6 and 7 


tc 


17 


" 35 


7 and 8 


<c 


1 


" 2 



Attitude toward school work. Both parents and 
teachers were questioned regarding the attitude 
toward school work. Of the fifty for whom data 
were secured, forty-three were said to like school very 
much, three fairly well, and three not particularly well. 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 179 

One of these was a boy who was taught at home 
and did not enter school until the age of eight years, 
just after the death of his mother. He entered at 
once the sixth grade, the grade where he belonged by 
mental age; but the physical restraint in the class 
suited to twelve-year-olds, who had been in school six 
years, was naturally irksome to a young child who had 
always been acccustomed to unlimited freedom. The 
teachers did not understand his case and for a time he 
was very unhappy. He has since been taken from the 
public school, and placed in a private school where 
the discipline is less exacting. As a result, his attitude 
has undergone a radical change. There were equally 
good explanations in the other two cases. 

All but five were very regular in school attendance, 
and these had missed time only because of illness. 
These five were rather delicate, yet in spite of illness 
and frequent absence they stood at the head of their 



Play and recreation. It is generally believed that 
children of exceptional intellectual ability are likely to 
have little interest in play. We sought information 
on this point from the teachers, rather than from 
the parents, in order to secure an impartial judgment 
based on a knowledge of many children. Of fifty- 
one for whom data were secured, thirty-eight were 
described by both teachers and parents as entirely nor- 
mal in their play. Seven of the.others were said to play 
less than average children, but to play normally when 



180 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

they do play. Three had always been alone, and so 
preferred to play alone. One was too timid and re- 
served to mingle well with other children, and two 
others were said not to care to play with children of 
their own size. The abnormalities of play life do not 
appear to be more numerous or more serious than 
would be found in any group of children picked at ran- 
dom from the school population. 

The data on out-of -school activities showed that our 
superiors were accustomed to spend their time after 
school like average children, playing, practicing music 
lessons, doing chores, running errands, etc. Satur- 
days were usually spent in the same way, with per- 
haps a dancing lesson, a hike, or a gymnasium period 
in addition. Many had gardens which they cared 
for, several had paper routes, others regular work in 
a store or elsewhere. 

Twenty-eight were taking private instruction in 
music, twelve dancing lessons, and four language 
lessons. Only twenty were not receiving private 
instruction of some kind. The time devoted to pri- 
vate lessons, including practice, ranged from two 
to fourteen hours per week, the average being 5.3 
hours. 

The time devoted to home reading ranged from two 
to twentynone hours per week, with an average of 7.6 
hours. The books given as samples of the children's 
reading were classified as "good** or "mediocre." 
Needless to say, most fell in the former group. Among 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 181 

the books and authors most frequently named were 
Stevenson, standard books of history, Dickens, Mark 
Twain, Cooper, geographical books, nature books, 
Conan Doyle, biographies, Eugene Field, Shakes- 
peare, books of travel, Irving, Scott, Ben Hur, Jack 
London, Little Lord Fauntleroy, Black Beauty 9 Arabian 
Nights, Alice in Wonderland, Pilgrim's Progress, Bo6- 
inson Crusoe, the Odyssey, the Iliad, Greek myths, 
Book of Knowledge, ASsop's Fables, Bible Stories, 
books on science and mechanics, and such magazines 
as Youth 9 s Companion, American Boy, Harper 9 s, St. 
Nicholas, and Literary Digest. Several had evidenced 
a strong liking for encyclopaedias and dictionaries. 

Trait ratings. Parent ratings on the twenty traits 
were secured for fifty children, and ratings by both 
parent and teacher for forty. It was taken for granted 
that the parent-ratings would be too high. On the con- 
trary, the average for the parent-rating is lower than 
the average for the teacher-rating in the case of nine- 
teen of the twenty traits. This is probably explained 
by the fact that the parent is compelled to take as a 
standard of comparison the child's brothers, sisters, 
cousins, or friends. To the extent that abilities are 
hereditary this would tend to give a higher standard 
than that employed by teachers, whose classes are 
composed of children of all grades of ability. 

Table 38 shows the individual traits arranged in 
two rank orders; first according to teacher-ratings, 
then according to parent-ratings. 



182 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 



Trait 


55 


Rank by 
teachers 


Average 
rating by 
parents 


Bank by 
parents 


Geneml intelligfiflcfc t T , , T . . 


1.29 


1 


1.50 


2 


Sustained attention 


1.44 


2 


1.70 


3 


Will power 


1.50 


3 


1.81 


5 


Persistence 


1.51 


4 


1.82 


6 


Dependability .......... t - 


1.56 


5 


1.92 


7 


Studioiisness ...... T , . * -, - 


1.58 


6 


1.74 


4 


Cheerfulness. ........ ^ . t ,- 


1.61 


8 


2.00 


9.5 


Obedience 


1.61 


8 


2.16 


13 


ConscfentioTispess ..-.- T - 


1.61 


8 


1.94 


8 


Courage 


1.62 


10 


2.44 


18 


Unselfishness t. T .- f -.-T. T - 


1.73 


11 


1.42 


1 


Wi,<w? of hunior ........... 


1.80 


12 


2.00 


9.5 


Evenness of ten^pei* ,,.. -, 


1.90 


13.5 


2.22 


14 


Intellecfaiftl modesty, ...... 


1.90 


13.5 


2.24 


15 


Emotional self -control 


1.94 


15.5 


2.70 


20 


Physical self-control 


1.94 


15.5 


2.30 


16 


Initiative . . - -, T .- 


2.06 


17 


2.08 


11 


General health 


2.10 


18 


2.14 


12 


Social adaptability 


2.24 


19 


2.38 


17 


LeadershiD ............... 


2.41 


20 


2.52 


19 













TABLE 38. SHOWING AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE TRAIT EATINGS BY 
TEACHEES AND PARENTS. (Correlation between the two rankings 
is .763) 

The above ratings show that the parents and teach- 
ers agreed closely on the traits in which these children's 
superiority is most marked. General intelligence, sus- 
tained attention, will power, persistence, dependabil- 
ity, and studiousness, ranked high in the estimate of 
both parents and teachers; social adaptability and 
leadership lowest. Parents and teachers differed great- 
est in their ratings on the following: 

Unselfishness parents rate higher 

Courage teachers " " 

!Emotional self-control teachers ** ** 

Obedience teachers ** ** 



FACTS ABOUT SUPEBIOR CHILDREN 183 

In studiousness, cheerfulness, and general intelli- 
gence, no child was graded below & by either teacher or 
parent. In power to give sustained attention, persist- 
ence, will power, conscientiousness, and dependability, 
only one child was marked lower than 3. In power to 
give sustained attention, persistence, and will power, 
the mark 4 was given to three children. In courage and 
sense of humor only three of the fifty children were 
marked 4, inferior. In initiative only two children were 
marked 4, and two 5. In unselfishness four children 
were marked 4. Five of the children were below aver- 
age in evenness of temper, five in intellectual modesty, 
five in general health, seven in physical self-control^ 
eight in emotional self-control, ten in social adaptabil- 
ity, and eleven in leadership. This is not far from the 
number we would expect to find below average in an 
ordinary group of children. 

There are two reasons why a rather large number 
are graded below average in social adaptability and 
leadership: (1) in school most of them are associated 
with children who are older and whose greater physi- 
cal maturity gives them an advantage over our young 
and inexperienced subjects in play activities. Six of 
the children rated 4 in social adaptability by the 
teacher were rated either 8 or 2 by the parent, which 
would indicate that among their own special friends 
and playmates they were average in these traits. 
(2) In a few instances the child of superior mental 
ability does not care to play. His preference for read- 



184 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CfflLDBEN 

ing and private lessons prevents him from becoming 
a leader or an important member in a social group. 
However, IS of the 89 ratings in leadership were 
1 (14.6 per cent), and 18 of the ratings in social adap- 
tability (20.2 per cent). Five were rated 1 in social 
adaptability by both teacher and parent. The pro- 
portion of leaders is probably larger than would be 
found in a group of unselected children. 

Moral traits. About half the twenty traits on which 
our subjects were rated might be classified as moral 
traits. " Obedience," " conscientiousness," " dependa- 
bility," "unselfishness," " evenness of temper," and 
"will power "belong very definitely to this group. The 
average rating for the children as a group on these 
traits was as follows: 

Parent Teacher 

Obedience 2.16 1.51 

Conscientiousness 1.94 1.61 

1 Dependability 1.92 1.56 

Unselfishness 1.42 1.73 

Evenness of temper 2.22 1 .90 

Willpower 1.81 1.50 

In all of the moral traits except " unselfishness," the 
teachers 9 ratings were higher than those of parents. 
The children were rated higher by their teachers in 
deportment than in a majority of their studies. The 
average rating on deportment was 1.54, a record 
equaled by only three of the school studies, and not 
considerably exceeded by any. 

These ratings would indicate that our subjects are 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 185 

about as superior morally as they are intellectually. 
Additional information pointing in the same direc- 
tion was obtained in response to the following request 
in the teacher's blank: "Describe any moral faults or 
peculiarities such as disobedience, obstinacy, dishonesty, 
selfishness, inability to get on with others, unusual or a&- 
normal sex interests, lack of balance, etc." Data were se- 
;ured for fifty-three children. Of these, forty-six were 
said to have no moral faults or peculiarities worthy of 
mention. Of the remaining seven, one " takes pleasure 
in others' mistakes," one has " a rather bad disposi- 
tion," one cries very easily, one is obstinate and " lacks 
will power to make himself do the things he does n't 
like " (certain of the school work), one girl is " very 
much interested in boys," and another girl is " shy" 
and " reticent." Practically all of these faults are such 
as would hardly be thought deserving of mention in 
the case of average children. They stand out in these 
children by contrast with their general superiority in 
other traits. There is only one child in the entire group 
who appeared to be seriously lacking along moral lines. 1 
The typical superior is exceptionally lovable and 
charming, the kind of child one would like to adopt. 
Health and physical traits. The average rating by 
parents on general health was 2.14; by teachers, 2.10. 
There were only two ratings of 5 ("very inferior") 
and two of 4 (" inferior "). On the other hand, there 
were twenty-eight ratings of 1 ("very superior"). 
1 See child No. S3, chapter XL 



186 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHTLDBEN 

Only four were said to have defective vision, and 
only one defective hearing. Twenty-one had under- 
gone operation for removal of adenoids, and two others 
were known to have more or less adenoid trouble. The 
record for tonsils was similar. The fact that approxi- 
mately half of our superior children have had either 
adenoids or diseased tonsils suggests that these defects 
may not be as injurious to mental development as 
common opinion would have us believe. 

One had chorea a few years ago, but has recovered. 
Two others had noticeable muscular twitchings. 
There were two stutterers in the group, both of whom 
at the time of the investigation were taking corrective 
lessons. There were no cases of abnormal fears. A 
part of the nervousness and restlessness occasionally 
mentioned was probably due to their not having 
enough school work to keep them busy. One boy, 
asked how he liked school, said he liked it in the 
morning but not in the afternoon, because by noon 
he always knew his lessons and then there was nothing 
to do! So much has been said about the nervous un- 
balance of precocious children that it is surprising to 
find over two thirds described as free from symptoms 
of this kind. The symptoms of most of the others in- 
dicated nothing serious. The proportion of stutter- 
ing and chorea was not far from that which is usually 
found for unselected children. 

All but three of the children were said to sleep " per- 
fectly ." The average time of sleep for the children of 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 187 

each age was found to be slightly greater than the 
Terman and Hocking averages for 69 unselected 
school children. 1 There was no case of marked sleep 
deficiency. 

Of the nine who were said to have occasional head- 
aches, eight have them very seldom, not more than 
two or three times a year. One had long been subject 
to serious recurrent headaches. 

Five were described as " not strong." One of these 
had always been sickly and at the age of eight years 
had only attended school one year. In that year, how- 
ever, he did the work of the first three grades. Another 
of these has also had insecure health from birth. He 
did not enter school until the age of fourteen. Be- 
tween the ages of six and twelve he had only one hour 
per day of private instruction, and in that time com- 
pleted the work of the first eight grades. The other 
three of the five were apparently just not strong 
enough to endure serious physical strain or excitement. 
Only three were seriously handicapped by ill health, a 
record which would probably not be excelled by an 
equal number of school children picked at random. 

Table 39 gives the ranges for age of walking and talk- 
ing in comparison with those for Mead's two groups 
of normal and feeble-minded children. 

1 Terman, Lewis M., and Hocking, Adeline: "The Sleep of- 
School Children; Its Distribution According to Age and Its Relation 
to Physical and Mental Efficiency " ; Journal of Educational Psychol- 
ogy (1913), pp. 138-47; 199-208; 269-82. See also chapter xx of L. 
M. Terman's Hygiene of the School Child for a digest of this study. 



188 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 





Range 


Months 
Median 


Average 


Mead's normal group* 


11-30 
12-72 
-18 

9-25 
12-156 
6-24 


13.54 
21.60 
13.00 

15.80 
34.44 
12.00 


14 

24 
13.4 

16 
36 
13 


Mead's feeble-minded group 


Superior children group 


Talking 
Mead's normal group 


Mead's feeble-minded group 


Superior children group .......... 





TABLE 39. AGE OF WALKING AND TALKING FOR SUPERIOR CHILDREN 
AS COMPARED WITH FEEBLE-MlNDED AND NORMAL 

* C. D. Mead: The Relations of General Intelligence to Certain Mental and Phy- 
sical Traits. Teachers College, 1916; pp. 117. 

The average age of learning to walk is a little more 
than half a month lower for our superiors than for 
Mead's normals, and nearly eleven months below the 
average for his feeble-minded. The difference in aver- 
age age of learning to talk is greater, our superiors 
being three months ahead of Mead's normals and 
twenty-three months ahead of his feeble-minded. 

Social status and heredity. We have classified our 
children according to the occupational status of the 
fathers, basing the classification upon Taussig's five 
occupational groups. Our subjects classify as follows: 

Class 1 81, or 53 per cent 

Class 2 22, or 37 " " 

Class 3 6, or 10 " " 

Class 4 

Class 5 

The results indicate that parents of a grade of in- 
telligence low enough to keep them in the unskilled 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 189 

or semi-skilled class are not likely to produce children 
of the grade of ability represented in this study. Of 
the seventeen subjects testing above 150 1 Q, sixty-five 
per cent belonged to class 1, thirty-five per cent to 
class 8, and none to class 8. ; Several children of the 
two lower social groups were brought to our attention 
and were tested, but in no case was the I Q above 130. 
There is a tendency on the part of teachers to over- 
estimate the intelligence of such children. The labor- 
er's child of 130 1 Q attracts about as much notice as 
a college professor's child testing at 150. 

Information was sought regarding the child's 
brothers and sisters, parents, grandparents, cousins, 
uncles, aunts, and any other relatives of superior ability. 
Twenty-nine of the parents mentioned relatives whom 
they considered superior. Fifty-one superior uncles, 
thirty-seven superior aunts, and numerous cousins and 
remote relatives were mentioned. The large major- 
ity of the children had at least one grandparent known 
to be a superior. Among the more remote ancestors 
mentioned were Whistler, Edwin M. Stanton, Samuel 
Adams, Roger Williams, Colonel Crawford, Ralph 
Waldo Emerson, Stonewall Jackson, John Hancock, 
Hancock Jackson (a governor of Missouri), and Arch- 
bishop Tait. Others whose names were not given 
were designated as " a sculptor," " an artist," " a me- 
chanical genius," " an eminent man in the South dur- 
ing the Civil War," " a president of a western college," 
" an inventor," and " an exceptional musician." 



190 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

That the parents of our superior children were 
themselves superiors is further indicated by the extent 
of their education. Of the one hundred and twelve 
parents for whom data were available, fifty-two 
(46.4 per cent) were college graduates, and ninety-one 
(81.2 per cent) were graduates of a secondary school. 
In the population at large, the proportion of college 
graduates is probably not more than one fortieth as 
high, and the proportion of high-school graduates 
probably not more than one tenth as high, as that 
found for the parents of our superiors. Of the one 
hundred and twelve parents, sixteen (14.3 per cent) 
had done post-graduate work in a college or university. 

Of the one hundred and seventy-two grandparents 
for whom data were secured, seventy-two (42.4 per 
cent) were graduates of a secondary school, while 
twenty-three (18.4 per cent) were graduates of a col- 
lege or professional school. When we consider the 
limited opportunities for higher education at the time 
when these grandparents were youths, this record is 
hardly less remarkable than that of the parents. It 
is evident that most of these children had sprung from 
a decidedly superior stock. 

Does the superiority tend to disappear? Excep- 
tional brightness in children is often regarded as merely 
a matter of precocious development, the assumption 
being that the final level attained is ordinarily no 
higher than in the case of children who test at average- 
normal. This assumption finds no support in any of 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 191 

the exact observations that have been made. Several 
studies have shown statistically that children who 
make exceptionally good records in the lower grades 
also as a rule make superior records in the high school, 
and the correlation between high-school grades and 
college grades has also been found to be positive and 
high. 

We have had a number of superior children under 
observation for six to eight years, and in no case has 
there been any indication of a tendency toward deteri- 
oration to the level of average. If there were any con- 
stant tendency toward deterioration this should reveal 
itself in a decrease of the I Q with increase of age. 
However, re-tests of superiors show that the I Q is 
more likely to increase. Of our fifty-nine superiors, 
nineteen have been tested two or more times. The 
greatest loss in the re-tests was 10 points, while the 
greatest gain was 21 points. The central tendency 
was toward a gain of .08 points. 1 (See, for example, 
Figures 21 and 22, pp. 153 and 154.) 

The results of the re-tests are corroborated by an- 
other line of evidence. One year after this study was 
made, the parents of the fifty-nine superiors were 
asked to re-rate the children on each of the twenty 
traits, and to give detailed information regarding any 
changes that had occurred in health, social adaptabil- 

1 However, as superiors of 180 1 Q or above become adult the I Q 
rating fails to do them justice, as the highest 1 Q possible for an adult 
is 122 by the Stanford-Binet. Children of 140 1 Q are not adequately 
measured above thirteen or fourteen years. (See p. 147.) 



192 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

ity, quality of school marks, and ease with which 
school work was done. Replies were received for 
fifty-one children. For no child did the average rating 
on the twenty traits show any considerable change 
from that of the year before. The gains and losses 
were all slight, and almost exactly balanced each other. 
The results on health, school marks, ease of carrying 
school work, and social adaptability were as follows: 

Bet- The Not so 

ter same good 

Health 8 44 4 

School marks 5 40 6 

Ease of school work 2 47 2 

Social adaptability 9 42 

On the whole, the amount of change appears well- 
nigh insignificant. Such changes as occurred in social 
adaptability, which constitutes the greatest problem 
for superiors, were all in the direction of improvement. 

There is one circumstance which tends to make the 
superiority of bright children less apparent (but not 
less real) with increase of age. In the lower and mid- 
dle grades all the children attend school, and the supe- 
rior child in these grades is compared with the average 
for children in general. In the upper grades the chil- 
dren of inferior ability are rapidly eliminated, and here 
the superior is compared with " survivors " who com- 
pose a highly selected group. For this reason, the 
child who is correctly rated as " very superior " in the 
fifth grade may rank as merely "superior" in high 
school, and perhaps as only " average M in college. He 



FACTS ABOUT SUPERIOR CHILDREN 193 

has not deteriorated; the average for his class has 
gone up. 

Conclusions. The data which have been presented 
in this chapter justify the following tentative conclu- 
sions: 

1. That intellectually superior children are appar- 
ently not below the average in general health; 

2. That in the vast majority of cases their ability is 
general rather than special or one-sided; 

8. That the superiority is especially marked in 
moral and personal traits; 

4. That " queerness," play deficiency, and marked 
lack of social adaptability are the exception rather 
than the rule; 

5. That while superior children are likely to be 
accelerated on the basis of chronological age, they are 
usually two or three grades retarded on the basis of 
mental age; 

6. That their school work is such as to warrant 
promotion in most cases to a grade closely correspond- 
ing to the mental age; 

7. That the superiority tends to show early in life, 
is little influenced by formal instruction, and is per- 
manent; 

8. That superior children usually come from superior 
families. 



CHAPTER XI 

CASE STUDIES OP FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 

THUS far our discussion of superior children has been 
impersonal and statistical. We have sought to find 
out what is true of such children in general, as regards 
their physical, mental, and moral traits and the in- 
fluences which would explain them. This chapter will 
be devoted to brief descriptions of typical cases, in 
order that teachers may see in a concrete way what 
the superior child is like and sense the pedagogical 
implications of his presence in the school. The case 
studies to be presented could easily have been expanded 
to the length of a chapter for each child, and such de- 
tailed descriptions would be of the greatest interest. 
Our present purpose, however, permits only summary 
treatment of the most salient facts regarding a limited 
number of typical cases. 

Most of the children to be described belong to the 
group discussed in the foregoing chapter. Apart from 
the results of the Binet test, the data to be set forth 
were in most cases furnished by teachers and parents. 
Their statements have been in part summarized and 
in part quoted, though usually with abbreviations 
and with omissions of matters of secondary interest. 
The "trait rating" mentioned is always the average 
rating given (by teacher or parent) on 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 195 

physical and mental traits named on p. 182. It will 
be remembered that in these ratings 1 is "very su- 
perior," "superior," 3 "average," 4 "inferior," and 
5 "very inferior." It will be noted that in no case 
does the average rating of a child on the twenty traits, 
either by parent or teacher, fall as low as 3. 

,i No. 1. Boy: E. M. 1 Illustrating exceptionally rapid 
school progress and unusual will power. 

First test: age 6-11; mental age 10-0; I Q 145; not 
in school. 

Second test: age 7-10|; mental age 13-8; I Q 167; 
fourth grade. 

Third test: age 10-0; mental age 16-7; I Q 166; high- 
eighth grade. 

In the second examination (age 7-10) E. passed the 
induction test, 2 the arithmetical reasoning and the 
clock test in year 14, the code test and six digits back- 
ward in Average Adult, and repeated eight digits 
direct order and seven digits reverse order in Superior 
Adult. 

When E. was tested at the age of 6-11 and earned 
an I Q above 140, the prediction was made that he 
would be able to enter high school at the age of 11 

1 See brief description of E. M. at age of eight, in Terman, Lewis 
M. The Meamrement of Intelligence (Houghton Mifflin Co., 1916), 
p. 100. 

* These different tests are all described at length in Terman's 2%e 
Measurement of Intelligence, which see. 



196 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

years, or possibly at the age of 10. He did so at the 
age of 10-5, having completed the work of eight grades 
in three years. Practically every mark, except in 
handwork, has been perfect. He entered the first 
grade at 7? years. On the first day of school he was 
placed in the first grade, but within an hour he was 
promoted to the second grade, by noon to the third, 
and to the fourth before the end of the school dajfc 
His teacher had studied exceptional children and was 
able to recognize superior ability. Under the average 
teacher it would probably have taken E. two years 
instead of one day to reach the fourth grade. 

E.'s father is a professional man: the mother a uni- 
versity graduate and formerly a teacher. The mater- 
nal grandmother was a university graduate and a 
school principal of more than ordinary ability in math- 
ematics. E.'s ability in mathematics is also marked. 

Parents 9 notes. Health record good. Ability is 
fairly general, but somewhat special. More marked 
along mathematical and scientific lines than others. 
Wonderfully adept at arranging and classifying facts. 
When between three and four years of age could add 
long numbers. Learned to read at the age of 5 by 
following his mother around and asking the names of 
letters, and soon afterward surprised his parents by 
reading fluently out of a primer. Has had no formal 
home instruction, but parents have been careful to 
answer all his questions. Does little studying at home 
and reads only about seven hours per week. Spends 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 197 

his spare time in play, delivering papers, etc. Excep- 
tionally dependable and takes life seriously. Helps 
his father a great deal in the office, and can be safely 
entrusted with important responsibilities in the de- 
tails of office work. Has sometimes to be kept out of 
such work because of worrying about getting it through 
promptly and accurately. Average parent rating on 
txaits, 2.05. 

Later report, age 10, eighth grade. Health excel- 
lent. Reads more and does less statistics. Work in 
manual training still mediocre. School marks excel- 
lent, but not quite as good as formerly. "He seems 
to have his hands full for the first time in his life." 
Growing more adaptable and agreeable. Elected to 
various offices in school. Parents' rating on traits at 
this time, 2.08, about the same as before. 

Teacher's notes. Ability not altogether even. Spell- 
ing and arithmetic perfect. At the age of 8 did the 
work of the eighth grade in mental arithmetic tests. 
Has a wonderful memory for facts, but does not often 
ask for reasons or explanations. " Ability above aver- 
age in all lines, but especially so in statistics, facts, or 
anything capable of formal array. Can tell the study 
and recitation schedule of every class, and remembers 
the lesson assignment for all the other pupils; can tell 
who missed certain words yesterday in any class." 
Rather enjoys the mistakes of others. Exceptionally 
calm and quiet. Teacher's average rating on traits, 
2.10. 



198 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CTTTLDBEN 

One of the most interesting things about E. is the 
fact that his school record has been better than that 
of many other superior children testing fully as high. 
To one who knows him the reason is dear. His will 
power and determination are about as superior as his 
intelligence. He will not allow any one to excel him 
in mental work. In manual training, however, his 
work is inferior even to that of the average child of his 
age. 

No. 2. Boy: H. B. Illustrating extreme retardation 
in school, although nearly as bright as No. 1. 

Age 8-7; mental age 18-10; I Q 150; low-third grade. 

Vocabulary score, 44. Passed the box test and re- 
peated six digits backward in Average Adult. 

With a mental age of nearly 13 years, H. is in the 
grade which corresponds to his actual age of 8j. His 
mother wants him advanced because, she says, " He 
gets so tired of school when he finds it so easy to keep 
ahead of his class." However, he has only been in 
school one year and has been allowed to pass through 
two grades in five months. 

Parents 9 notes. Was seriously ill for some time in 
his first year. Health now good, except for occasional 
digestive trouble. Slightly nervous. 

At the age of 5j read like an average pupil in the 
second grade. At 7 read everything from children's 
books to newspapers and magazines, reading every 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 199 

word and understanding the text. At 5 years read 
numbers to the thousands. At 5j counted to a thou- 
sand. No special instruction beyond answering his 
questions in a simple, truthful and thorough manner. 
Has unusual ability in oral expression. Average 
parent rating on traits, 2.00. 

Later, age 9|, in the high-fourth grade. Health 
good. Greatly interested in the progress of the war, 
inventions, conversation, etc. Doing well in piano 
lessons. He ranks with one other pupil as the best in 
his class. No home work. At ease in any group and 
evidently a natural leader. Average teacher rating 
on traits at this time, 1.20, or considerably better than 
before. 

Teacher's notes. " He is very musical. His mental 
ability, however, is general. Says he expects to * know 
lots of things/ Would read continually, if permitted." 

No. 3. Boy : A. W. Illustrating the value of men- 
tal tests in school grading. 

Age 5-8; mental age 7-6; I Q 133; not in school. 
Age 6-8; mental age 8-8; I Q 180; second grade. 

At the age of 5-8 passed all but the vocabulary test 
in year 8, arranged the weights in year 9, and passed 
the three-word test in year 10. 

As a result of the test the father, a superintendent 
of schools, was urged to send the boy to school at once 
and to see whether he would not be able to complete 



200 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

the first two grades in one year. A few months later 
the father wrote as follows : " A. is learning to read very 
rapidly. In four weeks he has learned to read the 
entire primer of 187 pages. Four weeks ago he could 
not read a line." A year later, at the age of 6-8, A. 
was leading his class in the second grade, and at the 
age of 7 years was doing splendid work in the low-third 
grade. The father writes at this time, " A. seems more 
interested now than ever. School marks excellent 
and the work perfectly easy." 

It is altogether probable that but for the test and 
for the fact that the father was superintendent of 
schools, and therefore able to secure extra promotions, 
A. would have gone through school without ever hav- 
ing an opportunity to do work commensurate with his 
ability. 

No. 4. Boy: 8. 8. Brother of R. S., No. 5. Il- 
lustrating exceptional mental balance. Later devel- 
opment predicted. 

Age 4-7; mental age 6-8; I Q 145. 
Age 5-10; mental age 8-9; I Q 150. 
Age 7-0; mental age 10-8; I Q 153. 

At the time of the third test S. had not yet started 
to school. Vocabulary score at the age of 7, 28 words. 1 
At this time passed four tests in year 1$, including 
abstract words, ball and field, fables and similarities. 

1 Indicating a total vocabulary of approximately 5000 words. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 01 

In the induction test, year 14, announced the rule 
governing number of holes before the end of the ex- 
periment, but was unable to double 16. 

The following notation appears on the record for the 
first test, when S. was 4j years old: cc By 8 years S. will 
test llj." His test at the age of 7 gave him a mental 
age of 10-8, so it appears the prediction will be more 
than fulfilled. 

Parents 9 notes. No serious illness except the ordi- 
nary children's diseases. Has always shown remark- 
able power of reasoning. Has had little home instruc- 
tion, but is reading in the second reader (age 7). Is 
omnivorous as to the books he wants read to him. 
French lessons twice a week and some instruction on 
the piano. Allowed to go his own pace. " However, 
we have always answered his questions truthfully and 
fully. We have always allowed him to take the initia- 
tive, have never suggested his memorizing anything, 
have never forced anything on his attention.*' Early 
ambition was to be a railroad engineer. Recently he 
cherishes the hope of becoming a reformer! Average 
parent rating on traits, 2.00. 

S. is a most lovable boy, quiet and retiring yet not 
bashful. His bearing is one of very modest dignity. 
He is perfectly unspoiled. Father a college professor 
of journalistic experience; mother a college graduate of 
unusual ability and marked musical talent. Several 
relatives of superior ability, S. developed much earlier 



302 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

in childhood than his sister (who tests at 147) and gave 
somewhat more evidence of superior ability* 

No. 5. Girl: R. S. Sister of S. S., No. 4. Artis- 
tic ability and marked emotionality. Underrated by 
parents. 

Age 4-10; mental age 7-1; I Q 147; not in school. 

Wonderfully responsive. Pull of life and the picture 
of health. Talked most charmingly and with utter 
lack of self -consciousness all the way from her home to 
the laboratory where she was to be tested. Although 
less than 5 years old, she passed the test of arranging 
weights in year 9. The parents were greatly surprised 
that her I Q equaled that of her brother. They had 
probably not made sufficient allowance for the differ- 
ence in age. 

Parents 9 notes. R/s aptitude is described by her 
parents as being in the direction of artistic expression. 
"She sings wonderfully true to time and key and 
dances with natural grace. She has acquired a sure- 
ness of stroke in drawing which an equal amount of 
Montessori training never gave her brother. She has 
natural dramatic ability, but lacks the development of 
abstract thinking which characterized her brother. 
She has never been asked to learn anything, although 
her questions have always been answered fully and 
truthfully. However, she has never asked as many or 
varied questions as her brother, from whom she has 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 208 

learned most of what she knows." Average parent 
rating on traits, 2.85. Obedience and emotional self- 
control were both rated 5. R. is said to be emo- 
tional, impatient, and inclined to fly into fits of 
screaking if things displease her. Play life normal. 

No. 6. Boy: J. 8. l Lovable disposition. Indica- 
tions of literary ability. 

Age 8-2; mental age 11-4; I Q 138; high-fourth 
grade. 

Age 11-0; mental age 15-; I Q 136; high-seventh 
grade. 

Age 12-3; mental age 17-7; I Q 144; high school. 

J.'s I Q is by no means as high as many others we 
have found, but he has such a winning personality, 
charming disposition, and uniform ability that we 
consider Trim one of our most promising superiors. 

The father was a man of superior ability, and the 
mother had been secretary of a large business firm. 
Both parents died several years ago, and J. has been 
reared by his aunt. On his twelfth birthday J. handed 
his aunt a beautiful letter which he had written, on 
his own initiative, to express his appreciation of the 
way she had cared for him. This is typical of his 
loving and lovable disposition. 

1 See brief description of J. S. at the age of 8 years, in The 
Measurement of Intelligence, Lewis M. Terman (Houghton Mifflin 
Co., 1916), p. 99. 



204 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

J.'s unusual talent for writing is shown by the fol- 
lowing poems written before his eighth birthday. 
They are reproduced without change of spelling or 
punctuation: 



Hurrah for Christmas 
And all it's joys 
That come that day 
For girls and boys. 

Flowers 

Flowers in the garden. 
That is all you see 
Who likes them best? 
That's the honey bee. ' 

My mother 9 s busy 

My mother is very busy today 
And all I have to do is play. 
If I only knew what she had to do 
I'd like to help her, would n't you? 

What a trouble washing day; 
It seems my mother can never play. 
I wonder if she'll get tired out 
From walking, walking all about. 



Here is Sunday, resting day; 
That's the best tiring I can say. 
We go to church and pray and pray, 
That's the hardest thing I say. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 205 

Before the age of eight J. amused himself by writing 
fables to which he always attached a correct moral. 1 
The following is a sample: 

A Fable The Selfish Boy and the Poor Girl 

Once there was a rich boy in a city and he went into a 
candy store and bought some candy. When he came out he 
still had a lot of money. While he was walking down the 
street he met a little girl selling shoe laces. He just kept 
on eating candy and did not buy anything from her or even 
offer her a piece of candy. 

About a month later the rich boy's house was robbed and 
this little girl was getting a lot of money. The boy now had 
to go around selling and he met the girl many times, but she 
never helped him because when she had been poor he did 
not help her. 

Moral: Those you do not help will not help you. 

No. 7. Boy: T. B. All-round ability, with special 
interest in medicine. Musical family. 

Age 10-5; mental age 15-2; I Q 146; sixth grade. 

Vocabulary score 64, which is practically median 
for mental age 16. Passed the ingenuity test in 
Superior Adult. 

Father French, mother American. A great grand- 
uncle was Meyerbeer, the French composer. Another 
uncle is a locally well-known violinist and composer. 

Parents 9 notes. T. has always been perfectly healthy 

* It will be remembered that the Stanford-Binet test of fable 
interpretation brinjp an average of only two successes for five fables 
at the age of twelve, and four successes for five fables at the Average 
Adult level. 



206 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

except for slight nervousness. Somewhat myopic. 
Learned to talk at 7 months. School work easy; does 
little home work except in the practice of music, of 
which he is very fond. Shows a remarkable interest 
in medical science. All his childish games and all his 
reading have tended in this direction almost from the 
time he could talk. " Have tried to hold hi back 
because of his tender age and temperament/' Al- 
though healthy, he has always been high strung. Chief 
indications of superiority, his passionate desire to 
learn and his obsession for medicine. 

Teacher's notes. School work excellent, except 
drawing. " T. expresses his thoughts on any subject 
in a marvelous way for a boy of his age. He is capable 
both in his oral and written work. Very studious and 
interested in his work. His power of attention some- 
times seems lacking, but when I have called it to 
his attention on certain occasions he has said, ' I was 
only day-dreaming.' " Very adaptable socially. Abso- 
lutely unspoiled. Very conscientious and unassuming. 
Enjoys reading medical works, especially in the sur- 
gical line. Beads from a medical encyclopaedia. Also 
studies electricity and likes to experiment. Very 
strong sense of truth and marked straight-forwardness . 

T. is probably one of the most promising of our 
superiors. His interest in medicine was evident in the 
sixty-word test, in which he gave the names of numer- 
ous bones, muscles, and other organs of the body. We 



FORTY-ONE SUPEBIOR CHILDREN 207 

have here not a case of one-sided ability, but a mind 
of very superior general ability focussed upon a special 
subject. 

No. 8. Boy: P. T. Ordinary parents and dull 
brother. 

Age 11-11; mental age 17-7; I Q 148; low-eighth 
grade. 

This boy is specially interesting because of the con- 
trast with his brother, who at the age of 6-10 tests at 
mental age 5-8 ; I Q 88. The parents say the two chil- 
dren are absolutely unlike, and the verdict of the tests 
agrees with this opinion. 

The father is a carpenter. Neither parent has had 
more than a common school education, but the mother 
is somewhat above the average in intelligence. A dis- 
tant relative of the mother was a high official in the 
Methodist Episcopal Church, and a relative of the 
father was an archbishop of Scotland. 

Parents 9 notes. P. shows unusual ability in all of 
his school work and also in music. He succeeds in 
everything he undertakes. When he was 22 months 
old he knew the names of the important buildings in 
San Francisco and could point them out on a photo- 
graph of the city. Was never taught at home beyond 
the alphabet. Health record good. Desires to be- 
come a mechanical engineer. The younger brother 
expects to be a fanner. Average parent rating on 
traits, 1.60. 



208 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

One year later, age 18. Excellent record continued 
in every respect. This time the mother rates the child 
1 on every trait. She is probably realizing more and 
more the contrast with the younger brother. 

Teacher's notes. All-round ability. " A. is a great 
reader and a most satisfactory pupil." Teacher's 
rating was 1 on all but two of the traits. 

No. 9 and No. 10. C. D. and L. D. Brother and 
sister. Exceptional children of ordinary parents. 

C. Age 14-6; mental age 19-0; I Q 181; third year 
high school. 

L. Age 10; mental age 1S-8; I Q 137; high-fifth 
grade* 

C. made the remarkable vocabulary score of 82 
words, which equals that of the average university 
senior. He has reached a stage of development where 
the Stanford-Binet falls short of being an adequate 
measure. I 

A brother of C. and L. is in the seventh grade at the 
age of 11, and a sister is in the second grade at the age 
of 7. Neither has been tested, but both are said to be 
as bright as C. and L. 

In one respect this is the most interesting family of 
children of whom we have record. The father is a 
barber, the mother was a tailoress before marriage, 
and not a single known relative has had more than a 
common school education or intelligence above the 
ordinary. Each of the four children belongs to a grade 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 209 

of superiority not encountered of tener, on an average, 
than once among one hundred children. 

Parents 9 notes. C/s health is perfect except for 
myopia and slight headaches. Entered second grade 
at the age of 6 and shortly afterwards skipped to third.' 
Spends all his spare time in reading. Learned the 
alphabet at years and could read books and news- 
papers at 8. Special ability in mathematics. No 
special instruction, but has been encouraged. 

L. is more sociable, talkative, and active than C. 
Her health is very good and her school work gives her 
no trouble. She is less studious than C. but gave in 
childhood similar indications of superiority. 

Teacher's notes. The teacher says regarding C.'s 
high standing in class, "I would cite as evidence of 
unusual talent his answers to questions proposed dur- 
ing the lesson, which are almost invariably in a sin- 
gle short sentence covering completely the ground." 
Social adaptability inferior. Is pensive, very shy, 
and retiring in a crowd of boys. Remarkable power 
of concentration. 

L. is described by her teacher as exceptionally quick 
and accurate in her work and alert to everything. 

#0.11. Boy:B.F. 1 Remarkable all-round ability, 
which was greatly underestimated by the parents. 

i See brief desertion of B. F. at the age of 8 years, in Terman, 
Lewis M., The Measurement cf Intelligence (Houghton Mifflin Co., 
1916), p. 102. At that time B. F. was the brightest child in the 
Stanford records. 



210 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

First test: age 7-8; mental age 12-4; I Q 161; high- 
third grade. Vocabulary score in this test was 40 
(median for 12 years). The induction test in year 
14 and the box test in Average Adult were both 



Second test: age 9-4; mental age 15-7; I Q 167; low- 
sixth grade. In the second test the vocabulary score 
was 56. The fables, box and code tests of Average 
Adult, and the paper-cutting test and abstract pas- 
sages of Superior Adult were passed. 

B.'s father is an able minister, and the mother is a 
woman of exceptional intellect and personal qualities. 
The following statement by the parents illustrate how 
the superior child in a superior home is likely to be 
underrated because of the high standard by which he 
is judged: "His development has seemed to us quite 
normal and even. We had not thought of him as 
much above the average in intelligence/' (Mother.) 
"Really Mrs. F. and I think that some mistake has 
probably been made in the observations upon which 
your rating is based. While B. is an alert, good and 
thoroughly satisfactory boy, we have never thought 
of him as considerably above the average in mentality. 
We have tried to be good parents to him, provoking 
inquiry, answering questions and giving him oppor- 
tunity for a variety of experiences that would furnish 
raw material for his ideas." (Father.) 

Nevertheless, B. has a grade of intelligence which is 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 211 

probably not equaled by more than one child in five 
thousand* 

Parents 9 notes. B. has never been seriously ill, but 
there is a slight tendency to stutter when he is excited. 
Learned to read at 5. At 7 read Hiawatha and com- 
mitted 150 lines of the poem to memory. Does no 
home study and reads only about a half hour per day. 
Spends hours after school in outdoor play, marbles, 
football, and base ball; also practices on the piano. 
Has an unusual fund of information in history and 
current events. Catches impressions easily. Many 
interests. Allowed to go his own pace in school, and 
has had no formal instruction in the home. Wants 
to go through college and become a minister. Takes 
his place well among other children without being a 
leader. 

Two years later, age 11. The mother writes that 
notwithstanding a change of schools the teacher con- 
siders B. ready for the eighth grade. School work 
easier than ever. Shows a growing interest in world 
problems. Average parent rating on traits at this 
time, 1.75. 

Teacher's notes. Unusual ability in reasoning and 
an exceptional fund of general information. Also 
considerable ability in music. In two and a half years 
has almost completed six grades. Remarkably attrac- 
tive and alert. Not particularly handsome, rather 
delicate in appearance, but vigorous in his play and 
a favorite with the children who congregate in his 



212 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

yard. Rated 1 by the teacher on every one of the 
twenty traits, the only one of our superior children 
with whom this occurs. 

At the time of the first test B. was above 12 years in 
mentality, but was in the high-third grade. On the 
showing made in the test we urged the father to try 
to secure an extra promotion. This was done, and the 
results fully justified the recommendation. In all, 
B. has skipped four half-grades and still continues to 
secure perfect marks. 

No. 12. Boy: L. M. Brother of No. 13. Under- 
estimated by parents. Morally superior. 

Age 6-8|; mental age 9-5; I Q 140; first grade. 
Age 9-6; mental age 15-1; I Q 159; fifth grade. 

At 9-6 L. passed the code and box tests of Average 
Adult; also repeated 8 digits and did the ingenuity 
problem in Superior Adult. 

There are five children in this family, all above 
average. One earned "A" marks all through high 
school and graduated at 17, winning a college scholar- 
ship. Father a minister of exceptional ability. 

Parents 9 notes. Average parent rating on traits, 
3.21. Health good. First showed unusual ability in 
arithmetic at the age of 3 years. Has been allowed 
to go his own pace, except as older sister taught him 
in playing school. L. has a way of making for what 
he wants regardless of obstacles. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 213 

One year later, age 10J. Not robust; out of school 
because of unsatisfactory general health. " Brain and 
ambition out of proportion to strength, but is improv- 
ing. His interests take in the whole world; prohi- 
bition, Bed Cross, Y.M.C.A., Boy Scouts, Athletics. 
Gives morality talks to any one he thinks in need of 
them. Walks miles distributing literature for all the 
'drives.'" 

Has a circulating library of about fifty volumes in 
constant use among the neighbor children, for which 
he keeps the accounts carefully and systematically. 
Remarkable in his choice of books; "has never even 
by chance brought home from the public library an 
undesirable book." School marks continue good. 
School work rather laborious, as he has little patience 
with details and makes careless mistakes. Average 
rating on traits now, 8.20, considerably higher than 
before. 

Teacher's notes. . All-round ability. Without self- 
consciousness and speaks well before the class. 

No. 13. Girl: C. M. Sister of No. 12. Early in- 
dications of superior ability. 

Age 7-6; mental age 11-10; I Q 158; fifth grade. 
Passed the box test in Average Adult. 

Parents 9 notes. Average parent rating 1.95. Health 
perfect. Has abnormal physical strength. "Before 
we knew it> soon after her sixth birthday, she read and 



214 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

enjoyed the Courtship of Miles Standish, saying she 
thought it was ' such beautiful language. 9 " About 
the same time she wrote little two-page stories. In- 
telligence was also evident in clearness of answers in 
conversation, fine reasoning powers and right conclu- 
sions. Superiority noted at 4 years. Allowed to go 
her own pace. No home instruction except what she 
received from a very bright older sister who played 
school and gave her good instruction in drawing, 
reading, and numbers. Reads good poetry, the Bi- 
ble, and classics, all of which she thoroughly under- 
stands and enjoys. 

One year later, age 8|. Robust health. Highest 
school marks. Leadership marked. Average rating 
now, 1.50. 

No. 14. Boy: J. C. A case of exceptional all- 
round mental precocity. A leader. 

Age 11-4; mental age 17-9; I Q 156; seventh grade. 

Although only a little more than 11 years old, J.'s 
vocabulary score was 75. He passed all but the paper- 
cutting and ingenuity tests in the Superior Adult 
group. As a result of the test he was promoted to the 
eighth grade. 

Mother's notes. 3. could talk before he was a year 
old, could stand at seven months and run at ten 
months. He read Ivanhoe at the age of 7. "Has 
seemed always to read and study. Has always been 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 215 

a big boy to me." Of quiet disposition, without a 
touch of vanity. Has the dictionary habit, and is an 
omnivorous reader. Spends much time with encyclo- 
pedias. Excellent health. Has become interested 
in athletics and other boyish matters. Masters his 
school work with apparent ease. Adapts himself to 
any person or crowd. Leads in educational games 
and is often chosen as leader. Even temper, sympa- 
thetic, considerate, generous, and kind hearted. Ex- 
pects to go to college and take up scientific agriculture. 
Average parent rating 1.65. 

No. 15. Boy: 6. 0. Illustrating all-round superi- 
ority and marked precocity. 

Age 12-0; mental age 16-8; I Q 189; eighth grade. 

Teacher's notes. " A problem is never given that G. 
will not try. He always wants to know why, and will 
stick to his view until it is proved incorrect/* Has 
ambition to succeed and be the first in his class. Sense 
of humor far beyond his years. Has a splendid com- 
mand of language. His ability is general. Has some 
trouble getting on with the large boys because he still 
has childish ideas about some things; but takes things 
good naturedly and goes right on. "He is one of the 
best all-round superior children I have ever had in 
eighteen years of experience as a teacher." Average 
teacher rating on traits, 2.10. 

Parents' notes. Health good; sleeps ten hours. 



216 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Beads Shakespeare, the Book of Knowledge, and na- 
ture books. Some musical ability. Specially fond 
of arithmetic and history. Memory exceptionally 
good. ** At 8 years he loved to be read to, and could 
quote many nursery rhymes. At 4 he quoted several 
long stories word for word. At 5 he could print the 
alphabet, and insisted on being told how to spell 
words." No formal instruction before going to school. 
Since then he has gone his own pace. His questions 
have been answered clearly, and current events have 
been discussed in his presence. Is much interested in 
machinery. Understands fairly well motor-car con- 
struction. 

One year later, age 18. Did not attend school last 
year because of an enlarged cervical gland which 
necessitated an operation. Health is good now. 
Greater interest in outside activities and athletics. 
Plays piano and cornet. Does his school work with 
ease. School adaptability improved. Is less nervous 
than formerly. Average parent rating, 2.10. 

No. 16. Girl: C. 0. fflustrating marked leader- 
ship and social adaptability. 

Age 18-9; mental age 19-1; I Q 189; fourth year 
of high school. 

C. lives in a city in the northern part of California. 
When we visited there and inquired for the bright- 
est pupil in the city schools, the superintendent and 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 317 

teachers mentioned C. without hesitation. Arrange- 
ments were made with the mother for testing her the 
following day. On the next day, however, C. had 
come down with an attack of measles and had a high 
fever. Notwithstanding this she wanted to go on with 
the test, which was given, with the result noted above. 
All the tests in the Stanford-Binet were passed with 
one exception, the box test in Average Adult. 

C. taught herself to read when she was 31 months 
old. She started to school at the age of 6 9 and in 
seven and a half years had completed the work of 
twelve grades. Throughout she has led her classes. 
She is also a leader in all kinds of school activities, such 
as dramatics and class activities. She is a favorite 
both with fellow pupils and teachers. Physically she 
is more than ordinarily mature for her age. Her 
health has always been perfect. All her extra promo- 
tions have been given on the initiative of her teachers, 
the parents having always urged them to hold her 
back. Expects to be a lawyer. 

C.'s sister graduated from university at 21 and was 
president of the student body. Later did post-gradu- 
ate work. Another sister of 11J years is in the low- 
eighth grade. A brother graduated from university 
at 0, and at 24 is holding a responsible business 
position. It is doubtless this high standard of 
ability in the home which accounts for the average 
parent rating on traits of 2.45, or only a little above 
"average," 



218 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

No. 17. Girl: K. C. Exceptional personal charm. 
Indications of musical ability. A social favorite. 

Age 3-8; mental age 4-8; I Q 144; not in school. 
Age 5-2; mental age 7-4; I Q 142; not in school. 
Age 6-4; mental age 8-10; I Q 140; first grade. 

At the age of 5 K. counted backward from 20 to 1, 
gave definitions superior to use, and arranged the five 
weights. This test was given as a demonstration test 
before a dozen university students. K. liked the test 
so well that when it was over she did not want to leave. 

One of the most charming little girls we have ever 
known. Absolutely unspoiled and lacking in any 
appearance of self-consciousness. She sang beauti- 
fully at the age of 3. Learned to name the colors, the 
days of the week and the months of the year on her 
own initiative and simply by asking questions. 

Her father is a college professor. Both father and 
mother have several relatives of superior ability. 

Parents 9 notes. Nothing unusual in early child- 
hood except that her development has been some- 
what rapid. She spoke a few words at ten months. 
Play life and social relations perfectly normal. A 
favorite and takes the lead in play. Exceptional 
musical ability and interest in colors. Alive to every- 
thing around her. Seems to want to know everything 
she hears talked about. Allowed to go her own pace, 
but information she asks for is never withheld. No 
formal instruction. Average parent rating, 2.00. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 219 

A year later K.'s health remains perfect, her inter- 
ests are broadening and she is developing marked 
traits of leadership. Average parent rating at this 
time, 1.95. 

M>.18. Boy:S.D. Splendid heredity. All-round 
ability and exceptional courage. 

Age 7-^5; mental age 10-10; I Q 146; third grade. 
Second test: age 10-0; mental age 15-1; I Q 151; 
seventh grade. 

The great-grandfather of S. was a chum pf Abraham 
Lincoln and a candidate for United States Senator 
when he died, at the age of 35. The brother of this 
relative was a noted attorney. Father of S. is also 
an attorney, the mother a high-school teacher. A 
cousin on the mother's side is in the third year of high 
school at the age of 13 years. Several uncles of the 
mother were political leaders in the early history of 
Kentucky. 

Teacher's notes. " I cannot say that S. has unusual 
talent of any special kind; he simply has a big mind in 
a big body. Ability is all-round superior." Average 
teacher rating on traits, 1.5, one of the highest ratings 
we have found. 

Parents 9 notes. Health has always been perfect. 
Spoke a few words at 6 months. Entered the third 
grade at v years, and in two and a half years covered 
four and a half grades. Learned to read at the age 



220 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

of 5. Does no regular study at home, but reads about 
half an hour each evening. Holidays spent in play, 
chores, fishing, and swimming. No formal instruction 
in childhood, but has been encouraged to stand at the 
head of his class. Average parent rating on traits, 
1.85. 

One year later, age 11-8. In the eighth grade, doing 
excellent work. Health good and development satis- 
factory in every way. Average parent rating at this 
time, 2.10. In rating courage the mother made the 
following remark: " All I can say about this is that S. 
when only 10 years old entered a burning house and 
brought out a baby, then reentered and dragged out a 
wooden chest, and was ready to enter again when I 
had to hold hi outside by force while the roof fell 



No. 19. Boy: R. V. Early evidence of superiority. 
Natural interest in teaching. 

Age 11-7; mental age 16-6; I Q 142; high-seventh 
grade. 

Father a carpenter, with only a common school 
education. The mother a teacher before marriage. 
There are seven children, all of whom are superior. 

Parents 9 notes. Health good except for an attack of 
acute rheumatism when he was 6 years old. Taught 
himself to read with the aid of a telephone book and 
calendar. Loves to teach. Has prepared several 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 321 

children in the neighborhood for school. Superiority 
first evident at the age of 4. No instruction in child- 
hood. " We wanted him to be outdoors and build up 
a good constitution." B. is quite up to the times in 
politics and war. Joins in the discussions on these 
topics. Signed the prohibition pledge at Sunday 
School and will not eat anything that has brandy in 
it. Ambition to write books. Average parent rating 
on traits, 1.90. 

One year later, age 12j. Health good. School work 
very good. Leads among the boys in the neighbor- 
hood. Rather impatient and quick to anger, but soon 
recovers his poise. Parent rating at this time, 2.00. 

Teacher. Average rating on traits, 1.59. 

No. 20. Boy: F. H. One of our brightest chil- 
dren. All-round ability and very exceptional vocab- 
ulary. 

Age 10-5; mental age 17-11; I Q 172; high-fifth 
grade. 

Vocabulary score was 78 (14,000 words). This is 
almost equal to that of the average college student. 
Every test was passed in year 14, four out of the six in 
Average Adult, and five out of the six in Superior 
Adult. Every fable was perfectly interpreted. 

Father a physician. Mother had only a common 
school education. Several superior relatives, a brother 
testing at 137. 



m* INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHDLDBEN 

Parents 9 notes. Entered the first grade at 5. Abil- 
ity general. Superiority first evidenced at the age of 6 
by his unusual interest in school work and by his orig- 
inal thinking. Has never been specially stimulated. 
Allowed to go his own pace "because that was fast 
enough." Average rating by parents, 1.75. 

The teacher describes P. as having wonderful all- 
round ability and gives him an average rating of 1.80. 

No. 21 and No. 22. J. J. and B. J. Italian chil- 
dren, brother and sister. 

Boy: J. Age 9-0; mental age 12-7; I Q 140. 
GirhB. Age 6-8; mental age 10-1; I Q 151. 

Here are two Italian children, the only ones of this 
nationality we have discovered testing anything like 
this high. Both are exceptionally attractive, polished 
yet natural in manners, beautiful and unspoiled. J. is 
described as more studiously inclined than B. and as 
being also more sensitive. Mother was inclined to 
believe the boy the brighter of the two, but the test 
places the girl slightly above. Both parents are well 
educated. 

Three of the four grandparents are described in such 
terms as " extremely bright," "keen reader," "inter- 
ested in history and international affairs," etc. The 
paternal grandfather was an " able linguist and scien- 
tist," a member of the Royal Geographic Society, and 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 223 

a talented singer. Many relatives of culture and 
learning on both sides. 

J. did not learn to talk until he was 2 years old. He 
is somewhat emotional, but general health is good. 
Sleeps 11} hours. Learned to read at the age of 5 
years. At this age about one hour daily was given to 
instruction in reading and writing. " We never forced 
him, but always let him know there is a premium on 
fine scholarship." At the age of 6 was tutored about 
2 J hours daily. Has never attended school. Specially 
talented in music. Plays well and has a keen sense of 
harmony. 

B. learned to read at the age of 5$, and was able to 
read the fourth reader at the age of 6-2. " Superiority 
shown in her keen observation and in her understand- 
ing of human character. This was noticeable at the 
age of 4, or even younger." Like her brother, has 
been allowed to go her own pace. 

-No. 23. Girl: M. S. A typical iUustration of the 
ease with which superior children learn without in- 
struction. 

Age &-3; mental age 12-1; I Q 146; fifth grade. 

Passed the fable test and repeated six digits back- 
wards in Average Adult. 

Mother's notes. M. learned to read without any in- 
struction at the age of 3 years. Read signs and adver- 
tisements and names on food packages which were 
frequently seen about the house. At 6 years read bet- 



224 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

ter and more naturally than since listening to other 
children at school. Has dramatic ability. Shows re- 
markable grasp of all instruction and is good in execu- 
tion. Makes progress two or three times as rapidly as 
ordinary children. " M. has just * growed up ' as I have 
had continual illness in the home and have been un- 
able to give her the attention she should have had. I 
held her back from skipping the fifth grade because 
I felt that physical perfection was the first consid- 
eration." Health always good. Wishes to become 
a teacher or to take up dramatics. Mother believes 
she could also succeed in business. 

Later, age 9$, in sixth grade. Health and school 
work A-l. "A born leader, but a little too dogmatic 
and positive to be socially popular." 

No. 24. Girl: M. S. General ability, combined 
with talent in art. Exceptional heredity. 

Age 9-1; mental age 12-10; I Q 141; low-fifth grade. 

Passed the fable test in Average Adult, and the 
eight digits in Superior Adult. 

One grandfather a banker, the other a railway offi- 
cial; both educated, intelligent men. Both grand- 
mothers described as well educated and very keen. On 
the mother's side James McNeill Whistler, the noted 
artist, was a cousin of the child's grandfather. Several 
other relatives on this side had exceptional mental 
ability and physical endowment. On the father's side, 



FORTY-ONE SUPEBIOB CHILDREN 225 

an uncle gifted as a sculptor and painter. Several very 
bright cousins. 

Parents 9 notes. Parents rated M. 1 on every trait 
except courage and intellectual modesty, which they 
rated 2. Physical condition has always been perfect. 
Observant, excellent memory, craving for knowledge. 
" Has great enthusiasm for beautiful scenery, sunsets, 
and other beauties of nature." Is fond of animals. Su- 
periority noted at the age of 4. Encouraged to go 
ahead in school but not forced. Has been praised for 
good report cards. No formal instruction whatever at 
home. Ambitious in everything she attempts. Wants 
to be a teacher. 

One year later, age 10-*. The mother writes: 
" Health good. She awakens more and more to beauty, 
takes great pride in her work, and shows great love for 
reading. All of her work a pleasure except arithmetic 
(I wish arithmetic were a little more practical). Makes 
friends easily and is very companionable with older 
children. Wants to draw and loves scenery and pic- 
tures. Her best chum is a school girl of fifteen years/' 
Average parent rating at this time, 1.60. 

Teacher 9 s notes. Unusual ability to carry a melody 
in two-part singing. Reads music well. Exception- 
ally good in penmanship. Superiority general. The 
teacher rated all the traits 1 except general health. 

No. 25. Boy: A. W. Brother of No. 26. Underes- 
timated by teacher and dislikes school. Very sensitive. 



226 INTELHGENCE OF SCHOOL CHTLDBEN 

Age 13-1; mental age 18-6; I Q 141; low-seventh 
grade* 

A.'s vocabulary score was 84, which is equal to that 
of the average Stanford University senior. Missed 
only two tests in the scale, the ingenuity test and re- 
peating seven digits backwards. 

Both A. and his sister are very superior but A. seems 
to be more original and better informed. Until a few 
months before the test A. had always attended a coun- 
try school. His grades in school are good, but not ex- 
ceptionally superior. He has no hesitation in saying 
that he does not particularly like school. The teacher 
rated him 3 ("average ") on all but two of the twenty 
traits. She sees nothing exceptional in this boy's men- 
tality, although he is better informed and has a larger 
command of language than the average teacher. 
One wonders whether the teacher's misunderstanding 
has anything to do with the boy's dislike of school. 

Parents 9 notes. Health good except for chorea, 
which has now practically disappeared. As a small 
child he was very timid, and he is still sensitive. Re- 
markable memory, which first showed itself at the age 
of 4, when he learned his story books by heart. At 
that age he also learned most of Foe's The Bells. Has 
always used big words correctly. Learned to read at 
the age of 6 $. In three or four months he could read 
all of Riley 's child rhymes. " Prom the time when he 
was' a young child A. has seemed to have understand- 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 227 

ing and knowledge in almost everything beyond his 
years." Draws exceptionally well and has mechanical 
ability. "At four years could repeat verbatim pages 
and pages of books which were read to him." Allowed 
to go his own pace because of his tendency to nervous- 
ness. The only instruction has been in the form of 
answering innumerable questions. Several relatives 
of very superior ability. Average parent rating on 
traits, 2.05. 

Later, age 14-2. Health good, school marks im- 
proved; school work easier; less nervous. 

No. 26. Girl:E.W. Sister of No. 25. 

Age 11-5; mental age 16-11; I Q 148; high-seventh 
grade. 

All the tests in Average Adult passed except the 
code; eight digits direct order, and seven digits re- 
versed passed in Superior Adult. 

Parents 9 notes. Age of talking, 20 months. Health 
excellent. Has always been intellectually alert beyond 
her years. Ambitious to excel. Is very practical 
Has always had an excellent memory and early learned 
nursery rhymes and jingles. Superiority first noticed 
at the age of 4. Is musical. Allowed to go her own 
pace, " as she seems inclined to go quite as fast as is 
good for her." No formal instruction at home. De- 
sires to become a teacher* 



228 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 
No. 27. Boy: R. K. Exceptional heredity. 

Age 8-9; mental age 12-4; I Q 141; fourth grade. 
Age 11-4; mental age 16-8; IQ147; high-seventh 
grade. 

Father a mining engineer, mother a teacher. Pa- 
ternal grandfather a teacher of superior ability. One 
uncle a doctor of divinity and " a bright scholar." One 
cousin is a "mechanical engineer of exceptional abil- 
ity." Another cousin, a post-graduate of Harvard, is 
said to be one of the best mathematicians that Harv- 
ard has had in years. Relatives farther back on this 
side were Roger Williams and Colonel Crawford. 

Maternal grandfather a teacher and lawyer of abil- 
ity; maternal grandmother a teacher and "a great 
student up to the age of eighty years." Two uncles 
and one aunt on this side had exceptional mental 
ability. One cousin is an artist of ability, and an- 
other a talented singer. Washington Irving was a 
cousin of the great grandfather. Another noted rel- 
ative farther back was an earl of Kilnockie. 

Parents 9 nates. R. is somewhat nervous; otherwise 
health is perfect. Nothing unusual in early life. En- 
tered the second grade at 6 years, and later skipped 
half of the fourth and half of the sixth. Never urged 
on. Best work is in English and music. In his com- 
positions shows unusual appreciation of language. Is 
ambitious to write. Average parent rating on traits, 
1.50. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 229 

One year later, age 12-6. " R. is finishing the eighth 
grade with excellent marks. Work very easy for him. 
Health good." Average parent rating at this time, 
1.70. 

No. 28. Boy: J. P. Underestimated by parents. 
An exceptionally logical mind. 

Age 8-1; mental age 10-10; I Q 134; third grade. 
Age 9-2; mental age 13-0; I Q 141; fifth grade. 
Age 11-4; mental age 16-6; I Q 137; seventh grade. 

Parents 9 notes. The father, a college professor, was 
slow to believe that J. was much above the average 
child in ability. He has no brothers or sisters, and the 
parents had no general standard by which to judge 
him. Average parent rating, 2.44. Nothing unusual 
in early life, health, or training. Was taught to read 
at the age of 6, but has had no formal instruction. 

Two years later, age 11. Health good. Tonsils 
recently removed. School work done without effort. 
Somewhat nervous and sensitive. Average parent rat* 
ing at this time, 2.20, or somewhat higher than before. 

Teacher's notes. " J. can stagger you with astro- 
nomical facts. Delights in historical stories. Is not 
contented with statements made in the text, but wants 
detailed information. Questions everything; loves 
an argument and debates with zeal and ability. Was 
wildly happy when appointed to lead a debate. Has 
a code and loves secrets. His mind is alert to every 



230 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

impression. His hands are not responsive; he dis- 
likes to write or draw, but grits his teeth and does 
average work to avoid having to do it over. Reason- 
ing is his strong point. He can read any book and 
repeat the substance of it months afterwards. Social 
adaptability normal, but rather prefers to play alone. 
Does not care for conventionalities. Has an unusual 
sense of justice." Average teacher rating, 2.00. 

No. 29. Boy: B. H. Very much underrated by 
his teacher. 

Age 9-7; mental age 13-10; I Q 144; low-fifth grade. 

The interesting thing about this child is that the 
teacher considers his ability " average, except in lan- 
guage." As a matter of fact, he is farther advanced in 
vocabulary than in his general mental development. 
He is under-age for his grade, and has been rated by 
the teacher in comparison with children two and three 
years older. 

Fortunate heredity. Two uncles on the mother's side 
unusually intelligent; one was a prominent lawyer 
when he died at the age of 35, the other entered high 
school at 11 and is now editor of a large city news- 
paper. A great-great-uncle of the boy was a doctor 
of divinity and one of the foremost of pulpit orators 
in the South. B. has two brothers almost as bright 
as himself. 

Parents 9 notes. Health perfect, but sleep not very 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 231 

sound. " Have encouraged him because he is not am- 
bitious/' Was given no home instruction except for 
about a year when he started to school. Average rat- 
ing on traits, 2.65. 

One year later, age 10J. School work good, except 
that his penmanship is poor and his written work 
somewhat untidy. This sometimes lowers his grades. 
Improvement in social adaptability. Average parent 
rating at this time, 2.45. 

No. 30. Boy: L. 0. Underrated by parents. An 
"only " child. Marked precocity. 

Age 8-3; mental age 12-2; I Q 142; high-fourth 
grade. 

Passed the clock test and the induction test in 14, 
and in Average Adult repeated six digits backwards. 
Vocabulary score, however, only 25, which is not more 
than a year above his actual age. 

The most interesting thing in the data furnished by 
the parents is the fact that they rate the child 3, or 
average, on eighteen out of twenty traits. One won- 
ders whether this is because L. is an only child and 
there is no standard of comparison in the home. The 
average teacher rating is 2.20. 

Parents 9 notes. Health good. Learned to read at the 
age of 4. Above average in power of concentration. 
Became interested in books at the age of 2 years. 
Was persistent in effort to understand meaning of 



382 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

words and characters. Memorized and recited readily 
at the age of 2 years. "Have not encouraged him 
to forge ahead, but have not held him back. Little in- 
struction at home beyond the teaching of sounds of let- 
ters. Have also tried to answer all his questions and 
to point the way to further investigation. We think 
the child has a tendency to read too much." 

No. 81. Boy: C. M. Underrated by teacher. Ex- 
ceptional heredity. 

Age 8-6; mental age 12-0; I Q 141; high-fourth 
grade. 

This case is mentioned chiefly because of the follow- 
ing statement of his teacher: " I would say, taking my 
class as a basis of judgment, that C. is an average 
child." The teacher admits that he is doing excellent 
work in the high-fourth grade, also that the class is an 
unusually satisfactory one. She neglects to note that 
the average age in her class is about 10 years, while 
that of C. is only 8J. 

A sister of 15 is almost as bright as C. The father is 
a minister, a graduate of a theological seminary. Ma- 
ternal grandfather an army officer and graduate of 
Oxford. Maternal grandmother very musical. Of 
eight uncles, two were able lawyers, and three were 
successful engineers. The mother's grandfather was 
one of the most prominent Canadian statesmen of 
his day. Paternal grandfather a college graduate; 



FORTY-ONE SUPEBIOE CHILDEEN . 233 

paternal grandmother musical. The only uncle on 
this side is an expert chemist, whose sons show unus- 
ual ability in literary lines. The father's grandfather 
was one of the leading spirits in the old Hudson Bay 
Company. 

No. 82. Girl: M. C. Brightest girl in the Stan- 
ford records. Superior family of children, ordinary 
heredity. 

Age 7-10; mental age 13-8; I Q 174; fifth grade. 

This child, tested by Miss Blanche Cummings, Di- 
rector of Special Classes in Fresno, California, is the 
brightest girl of whom we have a record at Stanford 
University. Her development will be carefully fol- 
lowed. 

The father is a jeweler; the mother was a milliner 
before marriage. Neither parent had more than a com- 
mon school education. There are three other remarka- 
ble children in the family; a sister, age 11, in the sev- 
enth grade; a brother, age 10, in the fifth grade; and a 
brother, age 6, in the second grade. The last named 
tested at 136. No other relatives of superior ability 
are known to the parents. 

Parents 9 notes. Nothing unusual in health or physi- 
cal development in early childhood. Was given no in- 
struction, but learned to read by her own efforts at 
three years. Was permitted to use a typewriter and 
with it learned her letters, figures, reading, and spell- 



234 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

ing. Entered school only a year and a half ago, and 
has attended four different schools. Notwithstand- 
ing these frequent changes she has made five grades in 
that time with ease. " M. is more inclined to be firm 
and stubborn than the other children." Desires to be* 
come a school teacher. Average parent rating, $.70. 

No. 33. Boy: P. E. Early indications of superior 
intelligence. Apparent moral inferiority. 

Age 9-5; mental age 13-9; I Q 146; seventh grade. 
Age 11-3; mental age 16-10; I Q 150; first year high 
school. 

Both parents physicians. Maternal grandfather a 
journalist and politician who knew seven languages. 
A cousin on the mother's side is said to be as bright 
as P. Mother's relatives chiefly doctors, lawyers, and 
ministers. 

Parents 9 notes. P. knew his letters at 14 months and 
could read at years. Learned to count at the age of 2 
years. A little later knew numbers as far as the thou- 
sands and could find numbers in the telephone book. 
"When 4 years and 3 months old had read a good part 
of the Bible and read as well as a boy of thirteen." Al- 
ways insisted until told what he wanted to know. En- 
tered the third grade when he started to school at 6, 
and made nine grades in four and a half years. Memo- 
rizes very rapidly. Once became possessed of a desire to 
know the location of every town, river, and mountain 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 235 

and read the atlas through. Great collector of stamps, 
coins, foreign transfers, etc. " I have encouraged him. 
I consider a child may just as well be learning some- 
thing as to fool away his time. I never made him 
study. While he was a small child I bought blocks 
with letters and numbers, maps to be put together, 
geographical games, alphabetical and numerical boards 
and other playthings with which to learn. Later 
bought him a typewriter, which he soon learned to 
use." Play life fairly normal, but made difficult by 
the fact that his classmates are much older and larger. 
With them he cannot be a leader, while with younger 
children he is somewhat domineering and bossy. 
Obeys while at school, but is rather selfish and im- 
perious at home. The mother accounts for this by 
the fact that he is an only child and has been allowed 
his own way. Mother's average rating on traits, 
3.70. Desires to become a professor of mathematics 
and English. 

Later, age Id. Was out of school last term and 
worked as collector for a newspaper, making $25 a 
month. His vocational ambition now is to be a 
banker. School marks still excellent, but hardly as 
good as before. " Still somewhat spoiled, selfish and 
occasionally unkind in his criticisms of others. Com- 
pels boys of his size to do as he says. Strong willed. 
Punishes himself rather than give in. Needs a man's 
influence." 

Notes from school principal. Undoubtedly great 



286 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

native intelligence. Seems very learned. His ability 
is certainly general. Often appears not to be atten- 
tive, but later surprises one by being able to repeat 
eveiything that has been said. However, is spoiled 
and vain and is looked upon with a certain amount 
of distrust. Is said to have abnormal sex inter- 
ests. Once attacked a small boy with a knife. Effu- 
sively affectionate toward his teacher, but disrespect- 
ful toward his parents. Stubborn and willful. His 
school conduct, however, absolutely beyond reproach. 

Teacher's notes. Ability rather one-sided. Remark- 
able memory for facts, but lack of judgment. Has 
few playmates. Reputed to be a bully among 
younger children, although he did not show this at 
school. Is tyrannical toward his mother and grand- 
mother. Average rating, 2.89. 

Another teacher states: "His analysis, interpreta- 
tion and memory for detail in Julius Ccesar and Ivan- 
hoe have been far above the average of his class." 
This teacher described P.'s ability as general rather 
than special, and gave an average rating on traits 
of 1.55. 

There is no question about this boy's unusual abil- 
ity. Some would perhaps account for it on the 
ground of his early instruction, but we doubt the val- 
idity of such an explanation. The boy's social and 
moral development does not promise well, although 
his present objectionable tendencies may be out* 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 37 

grown later. This is our only superior who has evi- 
denced questionable moral traits. 

No. 34. Boy: H. H. Early instruction accompa- 
nied by marked indications of superior intelligence. 

Age 6-0; mental age 9-4; I Q 156. 

Age 8-9; mental age 12-10; I Q 147; seventh grade. 

In the second test, age 8-9, the vocabulary score 
was 55 (nearly 10,000 words). This is better than 
the median for 14 years. 

Little is known of the ancestors of H. except that 
both of his grandfathers were farmers with only a 
common school education. One distant relative was 
a lawyer of national reputation. The father is a 
teacher and the mother a woman of marked intellec- 
tuality. The accomplishments of H. were exploited 
in a number of newspapers in 1918-13. 

Parents 9 notes. Was specially instructed in early 
childhood by the mother, who early began reading to 
him such literature as Hiawatha, Julius C&sar, Bible 
Stories, etc. Learned to read at 4. At 6 was able to 
add, subtract, multiply and divide numbers as far as 
the millions, to keep the family accounts, make up 
bilfe, etc. Mastered the number combinations by 
playing dominoes, and learned a great deal of geog- 
raphy by playing post office and writing addresses on 
envelopes which he gave to his mother. Has accum- 
ulated a rich store of knowledge about nature. All 



238 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

his work is play to him. Plays the piano quite re- 
markably for a child of his age. 

Later, age 8. Not specially fond of school. Does 
little home study; reads only three or four hours a 
week. Spends most of his time at play. Mother's 
rating on traits, .10. 

Teacher's notes. A very lovable child, and below 
average only in leadership and initiative. " Wonder- 
ful knowledge of history. Is always ready with sto- 
ries to illustrate a point. Especially good in oral 
composition. Large fund of general information." 
Ability slightly one-sided. Does not seem to fit in 
with the play life of his classmates. Beads a great 
deal, including Dickens's novels, Shakespeare stories 
and child verses. Rather restless. " Exceptionally 
poor in writing and other handwork, but amazes one 
with his knowledge of historical events." Average 
rating on traits, 1.95. 

Later, age 9-10. Described by the succeeding 
teacher as in good health, growing very rapidly and 
more interested in play and companions. Marks 
still high. Improvement now in social adaptability. 
Average rating on traits at this time, 2.10. " When 
he came to us a little over a year ago he was ex- 
tremely restless and timid; spoke in very low tones, 
flushed easily, and never volunteered remarks. Re- 
cently he has relaxed, plays ball, worships the big 
boys, and has sprouted physically. With this has 
come a sudden interest in assigned tasks which seems 
very promising for the future." 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 239 

No. 35. GirlE.W. Ill-health. All-round abil- 
ity. Exceptional heredity. 

Age 14-8; mental age 19; I Q 134; high-seventh 
grade. 

E. is in the grade corresponding to chronological 
age. However, she was out for two years at one time 
and has missed at other times on account of illness. 
Although she has attended school only intermittently 
for five years, in this time she has completed seven 
grades. Considering her health, it is perhaps best that 
she has not been promoted more rapidly. 

The teacher says : " No matter what E. has to do it is 
always well done. She has a wonderful power of con- 
centration, a keen sense of humor, and never gives up 
until the battle is won. Her examination papers are a 
wonder to her teachers. They are always to the point 
and definite. E. has decidedly all-round ability.' 5 
The teacher rated her 1 on every trait except general 
health. 

Parents 9 notes. A good deal of ill-health from three to 
ten years. Somewhat nervous and irritable when fa- 
tigued. "Reads as many hours as we allow." Has 
spent many happy hours delving into children's ency- 
clopedias. Never had any formal instruction at home. 
One sister and one brother of little if any more than 
average ability. ** E. has always been first to grasp the 
meaning of a game, puzzle, or any subject under dis- 
cussion. 9 ' Average parent rating on traits, 1.65. 



240 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

One year later, age 15-4. Health not quite so good. 
Marks satisfactory but not quite as high as formerly. 
Inclined to worry over her school work. Average rat- 
ing now, 1.95. 

The maternal grandfather was a school teacher of 
" fine ability.*' Maternal grandmother " a student to 
the age of 82." Uncles are successful professional and 
business men. One aunt a talented musician. The 
mother's brother was a leader in his university class, 
but became insane. The paternal grandfather and 
grandmother were school teachers. One uncle on this 
side is a lawyer and judge. E.'s great grandfather 
served the longest term in the New York state legisla- 
ture of any man up to his time. Of two other relatives 
on this side, one was a noted Congregational minister 
in New York City, the other a famous surgeon. 

No, 86. Soy: J. E. Exceptional heredity. Diffi- 
culty in social adjustments. 

Age 11-0; mental age 16-1; I Q 146. School work 
irregular, but chiefly in the fifth and sixth grades. 

J. made the remarkable vocabulary record of 74 
correct definitions. He also passed the test of repeat- 
ing eight digits in Superior Adult. 

Has been kept back in his studies by ill-health (in- 
cipient kidney trouble), from which he had largely re- 
covered at the age of 15. Has been educated by a gov- 
erness and in private schools. Teachers consider him 



FORTY-ONE SUPEETOR CHILDREN 241 

very unusual in ability but hardly up to average in 
social adaptability. 

J.'s greatest difficulty has been in submitting to for- 
mal instruction and in adapting himself to other chil- 
dren. Until 11 years old he had but few opportunities 
to associate with others and was considered more or 
less erratic. His social adaptability, however, has 
steadily improved, as has also his tendency toward ir- 
ritability and imperiousness. 

Both of J.'s parents are of English descent. The 
father is a scientist, educator, and publicist. Two of 
J.'s brothers are of average mentality; one sister, now 
dead, was very superior, and another sister is a woman 
of very exceptional ability. A number of superior 
relatives on both sides. One uncle, on the mother's 
side, was an Admiral in the United States Navy. 
Relatives farther back distinguished. Many distin- 
guished relatives on father's side, one of whom was 
Ralph Waldo Emerson. 

Parents 9 notes. As an infant J. was much disturbed 
by loud or sharp noises. Showed superior ability 
early. While still a small child drew diagrams of 
"inventions" which proved to be actual parts of 
machines he had never seen. Great interest also in 
astronomy. Listed stars of the fourth magnitude. At 
present (age 11) works in the laboratory with shells, 
doing a grade of work which few university seniors 
can surpass. Will soon publish a book on California 
shells. Expects to become a scientist. 



24.2 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Four years later, age 15. Health improved. Some 
lessening of enthusiasm in scientific work on shells, 
accompanied by marked increase of interest in manly 
sports. The expected book has not been finished. 
Excellent school marks; work done with decided ease. 
Social adaptability now average. An awakening sense 
of responsibility. Average parent rating, 2.40. At 
this time J.'s teachers also testify to his marked im- 
provement along social lines, 

No. 87. Boy: M. A. Inferior school work and 
marked lack of social adaptability. 

Tested first at 10-11; mental age 15-0; I Q 137; 
eighth grade. 

When tested nearly a year later the I Q was 138 and 
he was in the first year of high school. 

Heredity exceptionally good. Father an able law- 
yer; mother formerly a teacher in a city normal college. 
Many prominent men and women among his relatives, 
one of whom was Samuel Adams. 

An exceptionally bright boy but a problem for his 
teachers. Although his mental age is well above the 
average in the first year of high school, his grades run 
from C to D. Is temperamental and more or less 
queer. Easily takes a dislike to teachers or classmates. 
Regards his school work with more or less contempt 
and part of it he refuses to try at all. Because his 
school work is poor some of his teachers consider his 
intelligence only average. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 243 

Teacher's notes. An unusual ability to associate 
facts, particularly scientific facts, and to repeat from 
memory after one reading. Rated 4 in social adapta- 
bility, leadership, emotional self-control and unselfish- 
ness. Is babyish in his play. Nervous; has muscular 
twitchings and is easily embarrassed in class. Is se- 
lected by his fellows as the one to tease, torment, and 
nickname. Cries easily. "However, I believe that 
M. will become more adjusted to his surroundings and 
make a superior man." Average teacher rating on 
traits, 2.42. 

Parents' notes. Health good. No special instruc- 
tion in childhood except the little he received from a 
workman on the ranch. Has been held back, but is 
now allowed to go his own pace. Reads history, scien- 
tific works and all kinds of magazines. Desires to 
become an inventor. Average parent rating, 1.80. 
(This was one of the few cases in which the parent's 
ratings averaged higher than those of the teacher.) 

Later, age 13. Marks in high school now slightly 
above average, and there is marked improvement in 
social adaptability and emotional life. Average parent 
rating at this time, 1.60. 

No. 38. Boy: A. L. 8. Poetic talent combined 
with all-round ability. 

Age &-4; mental age 13-2; I Q 141. 

This child was first brought to our attention as a 
result of a group test. We have not yet had oppor- 



244 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tunity to learn much about him, except that he is con- 
sidered one of the brightest pupils in the school of the 
small city where he lives. The following poem was 
composed when he was 9 years old. It shows remark- 
able maturity of thought for a child of his age: 

Do not worry over trifles, though to you they may seem 

great, 

All your fretting will not help you, or your troubles dissipate. 
If your sky is dark and gloomy, and the sun is hid from 

view, 

Bravely smile and keep on smiling, 
And your friends will smile with you. 

Happiness is so contagious, and a smile is never lost; 

Then why worry over trifles, though your heart seems tem- 
pest tossed. 

Therefore go on life's rough journey with an optimistic 
smile, 

See the world is good to live in, and that living is worth 
while. 

No. 39. Boy: J. 8. Intensive mental culture in 
early childhood. Fine mental balance. Has a sister 
who is an infant prodigy. 

Age 9-6; mental age 16-4; I Q 172; sixth grade. 
Age 10-4; mental age 17-8; I Q 171; seventh grade. 

In the first examination, age 9, J. passed four tests 
in Superior Adult, including paper cutting, eight digits 
direct order, seven digits reversed order, and the in- 
genuity test. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CU1LUKEJN 245 

Special interest attaches to J. because he is a brother 
of Martha, who at the age of 26 months was able to 
read any primer. 1 

Father a lawyer and a man of more than ordinary 
ability. Graduated from university at 81. Mother 
a teacher before marriage. Maternal grandfather a 
farmer, of common school education and average abil- 
ity. Uncles and aunts average or somewhat above. 
Paternal grandfather a bookkeeper of business college 
education and average ability. Paternal grandmother 
of average ability, common school education. 

Father's notes. J.'s superior ability first evident in 
third year. Father accounts for the superiority as 
" due to the fact that we deliberately set ourselves to 
the task of educating him when he was a young child. 
When J. was a mere baby I determined to start his 
education. Commencing at the age of two years I 
adopted artifices to make his play a source of education 
and kept at it persistently until he was five years old 
and had acquired the fundamentals of the first three 
years of school, after which I dropped the matter. In 
the case of the second boy, I had no time to take that 
course and did not do so." (Second boy only average.) 

Father describes J. as serious and dreamy, finding 
his greatest pleasure in reading. Little interest in 
tools or machinery. Quite different from the boister- 
ous, happy-go-lucky younger brother. If left to his 

1 See Tlic Journal of Applied Psychology, 1918, pp. 219-28: "An 
Experiment in Infant Education." 



246 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

own devices would spend all his leisure reading. 
Health always perfect except for scarlet fever at 5 
years. Average rating on traits, .35. 

One year later, age llj. Health good; adenoids 
and tonsils recently removed. Average of father's 
rating on traits now 1.75. Marked improvement in 
social adaptability. 

Teacher's notes. " J. is a boy of wonderful ability 
for his years. In arithmetic he never draws an un- 
warranted conclusion or premises anything unneces- 
sary to the conclusion." When he started to school 
he covered the first grade in a half day, the second 
grade in two months, the third grade in six months, 
and the fourth grade in two months. All but one of 
the twenty traits graded 1 by the teacher, with special 
emphasis on the boy's lack of vanity. 

Play interests and play life described as normal. No 
physical handicaps, nervousness, or eccentricities of 
any kind. " In every respect normal with the excep- 
tion of superior intelligence." 

No. 40. Henry. Illustrating the relative inde- 
pendence of I Q and schooling. 

Scientific ability overshadowed by musical genius. 
Extreme poverty. 

As a near neighbor boy, Henry has been under our 
observation since the autumn of 1910. At that time 
he was a little more, than 1&J years of age. He was 
tested at 14$, earning the mental age of 19 (I Q 131). 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 247 

Although the I Q is satisfactory, it is matched by 
scores of others among our records; but there is only 
one Henry. 

Henry had never been to school except for a few 
months when he was 6 years old. He lived in a little 
shanty with his semi-invalid mother and was the sole 
source of income for the support of her and himself. 
He tramped often to the mountains in search of rare 
wild flowers which he brought home and sold in 
beautiful bouquets to people who knew him. Some- 
times he weeded lawns or did garden work for his 
neighbors. For some years also he served as janitor 
for a little rural school near his home. His earnings 
rarely amounted to more than $15 a month, but some- 
how he and his mother managed to live on this 
amount. 

Henry's mother, since dead, was a woman of refine- 
ment and intellectuality, the author of two novels and 
a number of poems. She also wrote essays on socio- 
logical questions, at least one of which was published 
in an English periodical of international circulation. 
She was an idealist, imbued with advanced notions 
regarding religion, sociology, and woman's place in 
the world. 

Henry's mother was almost 50 years old when he 
was born. His father was an unsuccessful member 
of a distinguished family. Henry's paternal grand- 
father was an Archbishop of Ireland, and dukes and 
earls are numbered among his cousins. 



248 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Shortly after Henry started to school, at the age of 
6 years, he was one day seized on his way home from 
school with a strange muscular paralysis. He fell to 
the ground and had to drag himself home. Chorea 
set in, from which he suffered severe recurrent attacks 
for years. Except for occasional twitchings, he had 
fairly recovered at the age of 14, and somewhat later 
his recovery was practically complete. On account of 
this nervous tendency, however, his mother did not 
see fit to send Ti. to school, nor did she give him much 
formal instruction at home. She talked with him 
endlessly, read to him occasionally, and sometimes he 
read to her. They discussed religion, politics, and 
matters of literature and art. We have a list of over 
three hundred books which Henry had read before he 
was 14 years of age, also bulky notes of extensive con- 
versations which we had with him on such questions 
as socialism, atheism, scientific problems, etc. At 
14 he discussed these matters with greater breadth of 
knowledge and much deeper understanding than the 
average university senior. No less striking was his 
ignorance in certain school subjects. His spelling was 
wretched, and he had studied no formal arithmetic 
above the four fundamentals and simple fractions. 

As a boy of a dozen years, Henry's appearance was 
odd and interesting in the extreme. His speech was 
quaint, and rather drawled and stilted; his face was 
childish, but he looked at you with eyes that seemed 
utterly void of self -consciousness; his clothes were 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 249 

often ragged and always ill-fitting; his hair hid his 
ears and straggled down to his shoulders; his face and 
shoulders twitched occasionally with choreic spasms. 

Everybody considered Henry as queer, not to say 
freakish. If employed to weed a lawn he was likely 
to forget what he was doing while trying to compose 
and whistle a tune. His janitor work was hardly more 
successful. Henry had shown promising ability with 
the violin at the age of five years, but his chorea had 
put an end to his musical practice. Neither violin 
nor piano was touched again until he was about 15 
years of age. His musical talent, however, survived 
all the vicissitudes of poverty and illness. Henry 
knew that his nervousness, and still more the effect 
of hard labor upon his hands, had ruined forever the 
hope of his becoming a great musical performer; but 
he would become a composer. Day and night he 
dreamed of this and wrote out in musical notation 
numberless compositions. 

At the age of 15, having practically recovered from 
his chorea, Henry resolved to gratify a long cherished 
ambition he decided to purchase a piano. He found 
an old second-hand one and bought it for $60.00, which 
sum he managed to save out of his scanty earnings by 
doing without various " necessities " of life. Although 
he had not tried to play on the piano before, within a 
year he was giving recitals among his university friends. 
Within three or four years his playing was quite re- 
markable. Shortly after this his playing was brought 



250 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

to the attention of prominent musicians in San Fran- 
cisco who, with other friends, gave him encouragement 
and help. He was placed under the instruction of one 
of the best music teachers in the West, and soon took 
rank as one of the most promising pupils that instructor 
had ever had. At the age of 19 he spent several months 
in New York. His compositions at this time were 
pronounced promising by various prominent musi- 
cians. At the age of 0, without ever having been 
in school a year in his life, Henry was made Instructor 
of Harmony in the summer school of a great state 
university. He was reappointed for a second year, 
but was soon afterwards taken for military service. 1 

Those who had considered Henry as merely a queer 
child with impossible ideas and exasperating manners 
and frankness, were finally compelled to admit his 
musical ability. Even then, however, he was gener- 
ally considered a freak in all but his musical ability. 
His general intelligence has never been correctly ap- 
praised by the majority of his friends. 

We have seen the verdict of the Binet test. As the 
result of many hours of conversation with the boy, 
over a period of many months, we are convinced that 

1 On the day when the author read the proof of this chapter a 
letter reached him from one of Henry's friends in which was the 
following statement: "Professor S (head of the Department 
of music in the university referred to above) says of Henry that 
he is the only American known to him who has really great talent 
for musical composition. Damrosch has promised to produce his 
first symphony, almost finished when he enlisted, as soon as it is 
put in final shape. About a dozen of his compositions are being 
published at the instance of Professor S ." 



FOETY-ONE SUPEBIOR CHILDBEN 251 

his ability in science was almost as great as in music. 
Before the age of 12 he had read university textbooks 
in botany. His knowledge of California wild flowers 
at this age was remarkable. He had studied seriously 
the principles of plant breeding, and for a time, when 
it seemed impossible to realize his musical ambitions, 
he considered botanical science for his life-work. He 
might have done so but for the fact that his educa- 
tion had been too irregular to permit him to enter a 
university. 

One of the most noticeable things about Henry has 
always been his independence of judgment. His 
opinions on all kinds of matters are quite pronounced, 
and he expresses them without regard for other peo- 
ple's feelings. By many acquaintances he is consid- 
ered rude and ill-mannered. This does him injustice; 
he is merely naively honest, due both to his tempera- 
ment and to the influence of his early training. 

It remains to be seen whether Henry will become 
one of the famous musical composers of his day. 
Several musical critics of note hope for this outcome. 
If he attains fame as a musician, his biographer is 
almost certain to describe his musical genius as natu- 
ral and inevitable, and to ignore the scientist that he 
might have been. 

No. 41. Boy: D. B. Indications of real genius. 
Unequaled intellectual spontaneity. 

Age 7-4f ; mental age 13-7; I Q 184; not in school. 



252 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CfflLDEEN 

This is the highest intelligence quotient we have 
ever found, and all the supplementary data indicate 
that there is no other child in our list who equals D. 
in all-round intellectual ability. 

The test was made before a class of about a hundred 
students at Columbia University. The day was one 
of the most uncomfortable in the history of New York 
City, the official temperature for the day being above 
100 degrees. The room was close, ill-ventilated and 
wretchedly hot. The test began with year 9. All of 
the tests of this group were passed. In year 10 all of 
the tests were passed except that of drawing designs, 
which fell just short of being satisfactory. In year 12, 
seven of the eight tests were passed with ease. The 
three disarranged sentences were given without a sin- 
gle error in 12, 10, and 5 seconds. The five fables 
were interpreted as follows: 

1. Hercules and Wagon Driver: "H you work yourself 

you will get help." 
& The Milkmaid and her Plans: "Do not build castles in 

the air." 

3. The Fox and the Crow: "Do not listen to flattery." 

4. The Farmer and the Stork: "If you keep company 
with bad people you will have to suffer the conse- 
quences." 

5. The Miller and the Donkey: "Stick to one way." 

In year 14 the induction test was passed without 
error, the rule being given as follows: "You multiply 
by two each time." The other tests passed in this 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 253 

year were president and king and arithmetical reason- 
ing. There was only one success out of three trials 
in the clock test. In Average Adult the fables and 
box test were passed. Although the examination cov- 
ered a wide range of tests, it required only 45 minutes. 
The responses were perfectly natural, almost playful. 
There was no waiting for applause, no appearance 
whatever of vanity. 

Although D. was not enrolled in school at the time 
of the test, he regularly attended the playground 
activities at the Horace Mann practice school. Pre- 
viously he had attended a kindergarten. All of his 
teachers had recognized his phenomenal ability. 

Father, Russian-Jewish; mother, Polish-Jewish. 
The father is an advertising man and writer, and has 
published three books of fiction. The mother is a 
high-school graduate, did some work in a university, 
and has written short stories and poems for various 
periodicals. Maternal grandfather a business man 
of " high intellectuality." Two cases of unusual mu- 
sical ability on the mother's side, also several distin- 
guished rabbis* Paternal grandfather a business man 
of unusual mechanical ability, fond of making and 
solving puzzles. The paternal grandmother taught 
herself to read English late in life. Rabbis on this 
side also. 

D. is an " only " child. The mother is a woman 
of exceptionally keen and judicial mind, and has kept 
bulky notes on D.'s mental development since he was 



254 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

a baby. She has furnished us with the following 
interesting items of information: 

"D. stood alone between five and six months; 
walked at nine months, and talked at about a year. 
First teeth between four and five months. Nursed 
for only five months. No illness except measles and a 
light case of chicken pox. No physical defects. Sleeps 
about 11 hours. 

" Played with anagrams when a baby and learned 
to read as gradually and naturally as he learned to 
talk. At three, without us knowing he could do it, he 
picked up a new book suitable for children of nine 
years and read it through intelligently. Has had 
some private lessons in music and gymnastics. Has 
also taken a few lessons in interpretative dancing. 

" Dresses and undresses alone, bathes himself, cleans 
his teeth alone and tends to his bodily needs. Plays 
ball, bats and skates. Handles ' mechano ' models re- 
quiring deft fingers. Typewrites rapidly, using only 
two fingers on each hand. Taught himself printing 
and typewriting. 

" Reads very rapidly. If he likes a book will return 
again and again to it, memorizing the parts he specially 
cares for. Probably averages eight or ten hours a 
week reading. Leaves his book willingly to play, but 
goes back to it when play is over. 

"Recently a world atlas, baseball guides, and base- 
ball news in the daily papers have all furnished him 
with what he calls * important work/ Has read a 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 255 

great deal of Shakespeare with a particular liking for 
the historical plays. (Pericles is his favorite.) His 
knowledge of Shakespeare characters is amazing. 
Reads the Book of Knowledge and as many animal 
stories as he can lay his hands on. Desires to travel in 
order to see and learn the habits of wild animals. Has 
read every history book in the house, including Gib- 
bon and Grote. He criticized Gibbon as 'having 
left too much out ' in writing about Rome. Among 
his papers are sundry notes marked * Important things 
the Scottish kings did/ * List of Roman Emperors and 
what they ruled over/ etc. This shows that he reads 
to find out things which he considers important. 
When taken to the public library he invariably chooses 
books of history. Is very fond of fairy tales but has 
not been permitted to read many. 

"D. will carry through projects extending over long 
periods. It took him several days to complete a map 
of the apartment drawn to scale; many weeks off and 
on, to complete a geographical map of his imaginary 
country, ' Borningtown/ and for a year he spent much 
time recording foreign state automobiles sighted in 
New York, with directions for recognizing the various 
licenses. Has notebooks and papers covered with base- 
ball data. Keeps data embodying special features of 
maps, charts, etc. In reading Shakespeare pays care- 
ful attention to the notes on the text, which in the edi- 
tion he is reading (Knight) are voluminous. A recent 
interest which has taken the place of the foreign autos 



256 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

is that of the trolley system of New York City. His 
pockets bulge with notes and transfers (together with 
marbles, with which he plays at every opportunity). 

" Plays games with cards, a baseball game, and a 
question game. The latter is an information contest. 
In the game of characters his side always wins, for he 
has an inexhaustible supply of Shakespeare characters 
to draw upon. Similarly when it comes to cities or riv- 
ers, such sources as Russia furnish him a supply which 
no one else can compete with. Other games which he 
likes are various kinds of solitaire, chess, and quite a 
difficult game shown to him by a teacher of mathe- 
matics, a game in which he outplays every one by his 
unerring calculation in what he called its 'double 
corner.' " 

The foregoing notes refer to D.'s reading and abili- 
ties prior to August, 1917. In March, 1918, the mother 
writes as follows: 

"His Shakespeare interest holds, but he has read 
recently much less history. Has developed an interest 
in the scientific articles in the Book of Knowledge. Re- 
cently showed me a toy telescope which he had made 
out of his old miscroscope and mounted on the steel 
parts of his mechano. Spends hours over his toy train 
tracks. Once calculated how long it would take his 
little train to run a mile at the rate it went around his 
track; measuring in the center of the track, he ex- 
plained, ' to be sure to get the exact answer.' 

"Last year his expressed vocational ambition was 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 257 

to be a baseball player. Later, he said that while he 
h&d not given up his plan to be a baseball player, he 
had decided also to be an author. This was while he 
was deep in his ventures of book writing, having be- 
gun three or four different books in the fall of 1917 
and finished a play for his mother's birthday. He 
has begun a book called Bomingtown, with chapters and 
headings already planned; also another book called 
Facts about Bomingtown and Washabett, with table of 
contents and headings for fifty chapters ! Of the text 
so far there are five typewritten pages and one illus- 
tration. A third book is about Bully Wu&y, or the 
Magical Egg. 

"Another new interest is the dictionary he is mak- 
ing of 'Borningtown/ Many of the words which he 
makes up for this dictionary are intended as improve- 
ments on the English language. For example 
'smallen,' to make small. His interest in words and 
their derivations led us to begin this year a little 
formal Latin, at which he spends about an hour a 
week. His ability to analyze and classify have made 
it quite easy for him to learn thus far the first and 
second declensions of nouns and adjectives and a few 
conjugations. 

"He learned to count, to add and to subtract by 
means of playing cards, which were among his first 
playthings. Formal arithmetic was begun when he 
was 7 years old by spending about an hour a week 
upon it. This year he is giving about an hour each 



258 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

week to algebra and about as much to geometry, with 
his father as teacher. He has no difficulty with either 
subject. Often sets himself problems in geometry to 
solve. 

"In the study of music has applied his ability to 
analyze and arrange so that he has made big strides in 
musical theory and wants to compose melodies to fit 
the words of the poems he selects. 

" Conscientious. Refuses to lie. Clings tenaciously 
to a standard which he recognizes as desirable. Used 
to mark himself for what he considered good writ- 
ing and was quick to acknowledge poor work. Obeys 
instructions regarding errands, etc. Above average 
in unselfishness. Makes plans to give pleasure to 
others, and often, with a manifest effort, of his own 
volition leaves the best or biggest for some one else. 
Loves to share his pleasures. Will remark at selfish- 
ness in others." 

The above account contains so many things it is 
hard to associate with the chronological age of 7 years 
that the reader may be inclined to allow something for 
maternal prejudice. To do so in this case would be a 
mistake. The Binet test, made under extraordinarily 
unfavorable conditions, indicates a level of mental 
ability not far below that which is normal for children 
of 14 years. We have also the testimony of the kinder- 
garten and playground instructors in the Horace 
Mann school, which agreed thoroughly with the notes 



FORTY-ONE SDPEBIOR CHILDEEN 259 

furnished by the mother. The average rating given by 
the mother on the twenty traits was 1.93; that of the 
kindergarten teacher who knew D. best, 1.90. His 
former kindergarten teacher says: "D. is a most re- 
markable boy. His greatest difficulty has been social 
adaptability, but his experience in kindergarten and 
playground has brought him well up toward the nor- 
mal in this respect. Reads the Iliad and Shakespeare 
and publishes a weekly playground newspaper." 

One who desired further proof of D.'s exceptional 
intelligence would find it in convincing abundance in 
any issue of this newspaper, which is a rare essay in 
journalism for a boy of 7 years. It is a one sheet, 
three column affair, typed. All of the composition is 
done by D. who " prints " it on his typewriter. There 
is a joke section, an advertising section, a news sec- 
tion, and various extras and incidentals from time to 
time. The jokes are often such as would not be un- 
derstood by children below the mental level of twelve 
years. 

It will be seen that D. is far superior in general 
ability to any of the other children we have described. 
His ability seems to compare favorably with that of 
Francis Galton, 1 who in childhood showed similar in- 
dications of genius. Whether the promise of the pres- 
ent will be fulfilled, only the future can tell. How- 

1 Terman, Lewis M., "The Intelligence Quotient of Francis 
Galton," American Journal of Psychology, 1918. Compare also 
"The Psychology of a Prodigious Child," Journal of Applied 
Psychology, 1917, by Leta S. Hollingworth and others. 



860 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

ever, considering his fine balance of personal, moral, 
and intellectual traits, there is every reason to be- 
lieve that he will become a distinguished man. 

Indications of superior endowment. Doubtless the 
reader has sensed a degree of monotony in the above 
descriptions of superior children. Such children show 
the usual individual differences in temperament and 
personality, but intellectually they have much in com- 
mon. Certain qualities are mentioned again and again 
by both parent and teacher. Phrases most often used 
in giving indications of superior endowment are the 
following: 

" Alert beyond his years " ; 

" Has such keen powers of observation " ; 

" Shows a passionate desire to learn " ; 

'* Asks endless questions " ; 

" Is interested hi everything " ; 

*' Is ambitious to excel " ; 

" Gets the highest school marks " ; 

" Writes such wonderful examination papers ** ; 

" Has such a fine command of language " ; 

" Has fine reasoning powers " ; 

" Shows independence of judgment M ; 

" Is an original thinker " ; 

"Answers always to the point"; 

"Has a keen sense of humor" ; 

" Has unusual power of concentration " ; 

" Is more dependable than other children of his age " ; 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 261 

" Conscientious to a fault " ; 

" Such a lovable child "; etc. 

Many are also described as exceptionally truthful, 
sympathetic, generous, thoughtful of others, and en- 
dowed with a sense of moral responsibility which 
shows itself in a willingness to work and to deny them- 
selves for social ends. Other symptoms of superior en- 
dowment receiving frequent mention include the early 
learning of nursery jingles; ease of memorizing; learn- 
ing, without instruction, to count and to name the 
days of the week and the months of the year; rapidity 
of learning to read; learning to read without instruc- 
tion by means of newspapers, advertisements, or tele- 
phone books; desire to write; love of reading; prefer- 
ence for worth-while books; liking for dictionaries and 
encyclopaedias; absorption with hobbies, such as col- 
lections, wireless telegraphy, and educational games. 
These indications are mentioned so often as to appear 
well-nigh universal with this class of children. 

Only a few have traits that are undesirable. Several 
are more or less nervous, a few are exceptionally timid, 
three or four are somewhat vain, a few dislike the rou- 
tine and restraint of the school, one is rather lazy, one 
lacks affection, one shows symptoms of incorrigibility 
at home, and several are below average in leadership 
and social adaptability. Making proper social adjust- 
ments is perhaps the most difficult problem for these 
superior children. Their intellectual superiority tends 
to set them apart from children of their own age, while 



262 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDBEN 

they are at the same time prevented from equal asso- 
ciation with older children both by their lack of physi- 
cal strength and by the relative immaturity of their 
play instincts. No. 42, for example, who at the age 
of 7 tests above ISi, obviously cannot compete with 
average 13-year-old boys in the usual games of physi- 
cal skill, nor is he near enough adolescence to share 
their mental outlook. His play interests are in many 
respects like those of ordinary children of 7 years; yet 
he is largely cut off from natural association with such 
children by the fact that he speaks a different lan- 
guage. His vocabulary is so " grown-up " that his 
playfellows often cannot understand what he is talking 
about. Considering such difficulties, the wonder is 
that only two or three of our superior children are no- 
ticeably queer socially, and that only one borders on 
the "outcast." 

Objections to grading superior children by mental 
age. The question may be raised whether the diffi- 
culty of social adjustment does not constitute a serious 
objection to the plan of grading superior children ac- 
cording to mental age, since this would associate them 
in class work with children who are several years older. 
This danger, however, is largely offset by the oppor- 
tunities which the playground offers for making con- 
genial acquaintances. The injury done by having 
such a child recite with children whom he cannot com- 
pete with in play must be very slight compared to the 
intellectual and moral injury which is wrought by 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 263 

keeping him always at tasks which are too easy to 
command his best efforts. 

One solution would be to have the child of excep- 
tional ability remain out of school every second or third 
year. This would tend to keep him in class with 
children of about his own age, while at the same time 
repairing a reasonable amount of effort to keep up in 
school work. The plan assumes, however, that the 
school authorities will allow such a child to skip the 
grade which his fellows take while he is out of school. 
If this were not allowed, and often it would not be, the 
situation would only be made worse. The plan of 
" periodic rests " Las the further objection that by de- 
priving the child of the social opportunities which the 
school offers it would make his isolation more com- 
plete. Besides, there are few homes which could be 
expected to fill the child's free year with experiences 
of real educational value. 

-Opportunity classes for superior children. The re- 
sponsibility for~tEelpight education of superior children 
belongs with the school. If the opportunities now 
offered are not suitable, it is the duty of the school to 
provide something better. While some relief is fur- 
nished by an elastic system of promotion which will 
allow the superior child to skip a half grade occasion- 
ally, this should be regarded as a makeshift rather than 
a final solution of the problem. The contribution of 
the school must be more positive and more educa- 
tional. If the needs of superior children are to be 



264 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

met, special classes and special courses will have to 
be provided. The advantages of such classes are 
many. 

(1) They allow children to make rapid progress 
without skipping vital parts of the subject-mat- 
ter; 

(2) They allow a broadening and enriching of the 
course of study because of the larger accom- 
plishments possible to superior minds; 

(8) They are a discouragement to vanity because 
the level of competition is raised and the 
measure of a child's success depends upon his 
relative standing in the class; 

(4) They insure the mental and moral training 
which can come only from sustained effort; 

(5) They furnish an atmosphere which is intellec- 
tually much more stimulating than that found 
in the average class; 

(6) Since they bring together children of similar 
age and attainments, they go far to solve the 
problem of social adjustment. 

Wherever " opportunity classes " for bright children 
have been tried they have proved an immediate and 
surprising success. The children are touched by new 
life and inspired with new enthusiasm. That two or 
three grades are usually covered in one year is perhaps 
a matter of secondary importance compared with the 
intellectual awakening and the intensification of effort 
which suc^cKsses provoke^ The results have been 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 265 

so uniformly successful that the special class for gifted 
children may be considered to have passed the experi- 
mental stage. The following illustration is typical : 

In February, 1917, an opportunity class was formed 
in Louisville, Kentucky. It consisted of 21 children 
selected by means of Binet tests. The intelligence 
quotients ranged from 120 to 167, fifteen being above 
135. The class covered the work of an entire grade in 
a half year. "Besides the accomplishment of this 
work, the children learned to use with a considerable 
degree of freedom 400 words in conversational Ger- 
man. They also composed the words and music of 
a spring song and an operetta. The class did this 
work happily and with ease. Home study was dis- 
couraged, except where it was a matter of great desire, 
and then it was limited to twenty minutes. , . . In 
character and disposition these children are conceded 
by all who know them to be superior. They are not 
conceited or puffed up by their selection for the 
class." Miss Race, from whom the above is quoted, 
states that whatever touches of conceit were present 
at the beginning of the class were largely eradicated 
before the end of the term. 1 

A similar class has been conducted in New York 
City by Miss May Irwin, 2 and another in Urbana, 



1 Race, Henrietta, "A Study of a Class of Children of Superior 
Intelligence," Journal of Educational Psychology, 1918, pp. 91-97. 

* See Louise F. Specht: "A Terman Class in School No. 84, 
Manhattan," School and Society, March 29, 1919, pp. 393-98. 



266 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

Illinois, under the direction of Professor Whipple. l In 
both cases the results agreed in a striking way with 
those of the Louisville experiment. 

Class sectioning according to mental ability. When 
the school system is very small, or when other condi- 
tions prevent the formation of a special class for the 
children of exceptional ability, their needs may be to a 
certain extent provided for by the division of the regu- 
lar class into three sections: a slow-moving, a normal, 
and a fast-moving group. For example, in a second- 
grade class of forty pupils the groups might contain 
ten, twenty, and ten pupils respectively. These 
could be instructed by the same teacher, but as sepa* 
rate classes making different progress and doing work 
of somewhat different quality. The work of the three 
sections could be so organized that their separate 
instruction would be by no means an added burden 
to the teacher. 

This chapter has been largely devoted to descrip- 
tions of children of very exceptional superiority. 
Probably not more than one child in a hundred tests 
above 135 and not more than one in two hundred 
above 140. The children who test between 120 and 
135 are several times as numerous, and almost equally 
in need of special advantages. It is from this group 
that the majority of teachers, doctors, lawyers, min- 
isters and other professional men and women come. 

1 Whipple, G. M., Classes for Gifted Children (School and Home 
Pub. Co., Bloomington, UL, 1919); pp. 151. 



FORTY-ONE SUPERIOR CHILDREN 267 

Special classes for eight or ten per cent of the pupils 
are perhaps not feasible and may not be necessary, 
but much can be done by the sectioning of classes in 
the manner just indicated and by making the system 
of promotion more elastic. 



CHAPTER XII 

INTELLIGENCE TESTS IN VOCATIONAL AND 
EDUCATIONAL GUIDANCE l 

Educational and vocational guidance inseparable. 
Vocational guidance usually receives attention only on 
the eve of the child's departure from school. Thus 
restricted, it falls greatly short of its possible value. 
If the pupil is to be properly trained for his life-work, 
as well as directed to it, his education must at every 
step take account of his vocational possibilities. That 
is, vocational guidance must be preceded by educa- 
tional guidance. 

Previous chapters have shown how frequently the 
school errs in attempting to force children through 
courses of study which are beyond their intellectual 
capacities, and how futile and discouraging such ef- 
forts are. A large proportion of children must leave 
school with little direct preparation for life, simply 
because they are intellectually incapable of mastering 
the contents of a curriculum which the school has set 
up as theoretically desirable for alL, It is time that the 
school should ask not only what it would like to do, 
but what it can do. Facts have been presented which 
show that the limits of a child's educability can be 

1 See also Hollingworth, H. L., Vocational Psychology (D. Apple- 
ton & Co., 1916); pp. 808. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUULJAJNUB 

fairly accurately predicted by means of mental tests 
given in the first school year. By repeated tests these 
limits can be determined accurately enough for all 
practical purposes by the end of the child's fifth or 
sixth school year. This early, at least, vocational 
training and vocational guidance should begin. 

The end is not merely that of keeping the child in 
school. This in itself is not necessarily desirable. In 
the conservative school system offering only the tradi- 
tional courses, it is perhaps just as well that pupils of 
80 1 Q or lower (i.e., 10 per cent of all) should drop out 
by the age of fifteen years. By that time they have 
gotten about all they can get from the older type of 
restricted elementary curriculum. Continuation would 
mean nothing more than to remain hopelessly stranded 
in the sixth or seventh grade, without further effective 
training except training in failure. 

Limitations of vocational guidance. It must not be 
supposed that vocational guidance, in the sense of de- 
termining exactly which of a thousand or more voca- 
tions a given individual should enter, is yet possible. 
The most important contribution which psychological 
tests are at present prepared to make is in the meas- 
urement of general intelligence. The special abilities 
which so largely influence success in the majority of 
vocations have not yet been satisfactorily analyzed, 
much less measured. The intangible factors of inter- 
est, will power, social adaptability, leadership, and 
personality are still less subject to exact determina- 



270 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tion, although their combined influence upon voca- 
tional success is doubtless very great. One's general 
ability may fit him equally for success in a dozen 
different vocations, and in this case the ultimate 
choice should depend upon practical considerations, 
natural interests, and various traits of personality. 

Nevertheless, intelligence tests will be of great 
value in vocational guidance, even if they tell us noth- 
ing more than that reasonable success in a given voca- 
tion is or is not compatible with the general mental 
.ability which an individual possesses. The saddest, as 
well as perhaps the most common failures in life are 
due to the selection of a vocation which requires a 
higher grade of ability than the individual possesses. 
Hardly less unfortunate is the person whose too mod- 
est self -estimate lands him in an occupation that is in- 
tellectually beneath him. A mistake in either direction 
entails bitter disappointment, since often it is not dis- 
covered until the time for new choices has gone by. 

Mistakes of this kind can be largely prevented by 
intelligence tests as soon as the proper factual basis 
has been laid^JBIrst, however, it will be necessary to 
find.the^actual ranges of intelligence represented in 
the different types of vocations, and especially the 
lower limit of intelligence which permits reasonable 
success^ It will also be necessary to determine for each 
.typical vocation the level of mental ability which rep- 
resents the " point of diminishing returns," in order to 
prevent superior ability from being wasted upon voca- 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 271 

tions which make only moderate intellectual demands. 
Tests in sufficient number will doubtless show that 
there exists for most vocations a middle range of men- 
tal ability in which the chances of success are near the 
maximum, that intelligence below this range becomes 
less and less favorable to success until a " dead line " is 
reached, and that ability of a higher order represents 
only so much sheer waste. When such standards of oc- 
cupational intelligence are available, they will furnish 
the most important single basis for vocational and edu- 
cational guidance. Knowing the intelligence of the 
child we could then select the vocations well within 
the range of this intelligence, and leave it to the child's 
natural interests and to practical considerations to 
make the final choice. Such a method would not elimi- 
nate the possibility of vocational failure, but it would 
eliminate one of its most common causes. Until the 
intellectual requirements of ..the different vocations 
have been more definitely established, some sugges- 
tion for guidance may be gleaned from the following 
studies of typical vocational groups. 

Firemen and policemen. In 1916 the city of San 
Jos6, California, made an unusual experiment, per- 
haps the first of its kind in this or any country. 1 The 
experiment involved a civil service examination for 
positions in the fire and police departments, based 
entirely upon standardized mental and educational 

1 Tennan, Lewis M. t "A Trial of Mental and Pedagogical Tests 
in a Civil Service Examination for Policemen and Firemen," 
Journal of Applied Psychology, 1917, pp. 17-29. 



272 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CfflLDBEN 

tests. The tests used included the Stanford-Binet in- 
telligence scale, the Trabue Completion Test, the 
Thorndike Oral Reading Test, the Courtis Standard 
Test in arithmetic, a handwriting test, and the Otis 
tests of spelling and arithmetical reasoning. 

Thirty candidates presented themselves in competi- 
tion for the ten or twelve prospective openings. All 
were American born, with ages distributed fairly evenly 
between 21 and 38 years. Their incomes during the pre- 
vious year ranged from $420 to $1350, with a median 
of $960. Their previous occupations ranged from 
totally unskilled to skilled and high-grade clerical. 

The distribution of mental ages and I Q's was as 
follows: 



Mental 
age 


10 to 
10-11 


11 to 
11-11 


12 to 
12-11 


13 to 
13-11 


14 to 
14-11 


15 to 
15-11 


16 to 
10-11 


17 to 
17-11 


18 to 
18-11 






Number 


1 


2 


7 


7 


8 


2 


1 


1 


1 






IQ 


60- 
64 


65- 
69 


70- 
74 


75- 
79 


80- 
84 


85- 
89 


00- 
94 


95- 
99 


100- 
104 


105- 
109 


110- 
116 


Number 


1 


1 


2 


6 


7 


4 


4 


2 


1 


1 


1 



The median mental age was 13-5, the median I Q 84. * 
The lowest fourth fell below 78 1 Q, the highest fourth 
reached 91 1 Q or above. The minimum I Q compati- 
ble with efficiency for policemen and firemen is not 
known, but, in the absence of a definitely established 
standard, all who tested below 80 I Q were rejected 

1 The reader is reminded that in calculating the I Q for adult 
subjects chronological age above 16 years is disregarded. That is, 
mental age is always divided by 16. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 273 

without further consideration. Choice from the re- 
mainder was made on the basis of personal history, 
and on the combined results of the various tests. 

Among those testing below 80 1 Q were four individ- 
uals who were already serving in the fire department 
as " extras." They had gotten their positions under an 
earlier political regime. The I Q's of these four men 
were 63, 74, 77, and 79. The 63 I Q individual was 34 
years of age, and had never earned a wage more than 
two thirds as high as that paid the average unskilled la- 
borer in his community. His deficiency is well known 
to his acquaintances, and he had secured his position 
as " extra M only through the influence of his father, a 
man of some local prominence. 

The individual who tested at 67 1 Q was pronounced 
by the captain of his militia company to be unques- 
tionably feeble-minded. He had never done better 
than unskilled labor, and at the time of the examina- 
tion was without employment. Another of 71 1 Q had 
formerly worked as a hotel porter and also as a railroad 
signalman. Although the duties of a railroad signal- 
man are extremely simple, they require attentive per- 
formance, and one may well doubt whether they can 
be safely entrusted to an I Q of 71. 

The following notes may also be of interest as show- 
ing what may be expected of various I Q's: 

I Q 77. Common laborer in a sawmill. Had served 
one term in the regular army, and reenlisted after 
failure in the examination. 



374 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

I Q 78. Deliveryman for a grocery store and "ex- 
tra " in the fire department. 

I Q 78. A teamster, unskilled laborer. 

I Q 79. No occupation except as " extra " in the 
fire department. 

I Q 81. Had served several years as policeman in 
an eastern State at $65 to $80 per month. 

I Q 83. A successful street-car conductor, said to 
be very popular with his patrons because of his genial 
good nature and his interest in people. 

I Q 112. Had completed the second year of high 
school, and had earned as high as $135 per month as a 
salesman. His purpose in securing a position in the 
fire department was to secure leisure for a correspond- 
ence course in expert accounting. 

Such data would suggest that the I Q of 75 or below 
belongs ordinarily in the unskilled labor class, that 75 
to 85 is preeminently the range for semi-skilled labor, 
and that 80 or 85 is ample for success in some kinds of 
skilled labor. When the candidates were classified into 
unskilled, semi-skilled, and skilled, according to the 
occupations they had followed, the following I Q 
ranges and averages were found: 





Unskilled 


Semi-skilled 


Skilled or better 


Range of I Q 


63 to 89 


74 to 96 


84 to 112 


Average I Q 


75.5 


85.2 


98.8 











TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 275 

Express company employees. Flanders 1 gave Stan* 
ford-Binet tests to 47 employees of a large express 
company. Only those were tested who had been with 
the company at least a year. The work they were do- 
ing is indicated by the following random selections: 
Accounting Clerk, C.O.D. Clerk, Settlement Clerk, 
Waybill Clerk, Receiving Clerk, Clerk in Value Room, 
Clerk in On Hand Department, Wagon Dispatcher, 
Chief Router, etc. These were typical of the rank and 
file of seven hundred employees, not including super- 
visors or semi-officials at one end or floaters at the 
other. In practically all cases the work involved a high 
degree of specialization, "offering exceedingly limited 
opportunity for the exercise of ingenuity or even per- 
sonal judgment. Success is achieved by the faithful 
and careful performance of a simple task for the doing 
of which perfectly definite rules have been given." Al- 
though the work done by the forty-seven employees 
apparently differed little as regards the amount of in- 
telligence required, the following wide range of mental 
ages was found: 



Mental ace 


10 to 


11 to 


12 to 


13 to 


14 to 


15 to 


16 to 


17 to 


18 to 




10-11 
1 


11-11 
2 


12-11 

o 


13-11 
9 


14-11 

7 


15-11 
13 


16-11 
4 


17-11 
5 


18-11 
6 























The range was from 10 years (I Q 62) to 18-7 (I Q 
116) with a median of 15-2 (I Q 95). One fourth were 

1 Flanders, J. K., "Mental Tests of a Group of Employed Men, 
Showing Correlations with Estimates furnished by Employer," 
Journal of Applied Psychology, 1918, pp. 197-206. 



376 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

below 13-10 (I Q 86) and one fourth above 16-7 (I Q 
104). 

It is surprising to find men with intelligence which 
would enable them to take a college course competing 
with others who could never graduate from the eighth 
grade. As stated by Flanders, " such individuals are 
possibly lacking in certain emotional, moral, or other 
desirable qualities; it may be that economic pres- 
sure crowded them out of school before they were 
able to prepare for more exacting service; it may be 
that the schools did not provide them with suitable 
vocational training; it may be that they selected their 
vocations blindly and ignorantly . "Whatever the reason 
there is evidently a big social and economic loss." 

Flanders concludes by calling attention to the abun- 
dant occupational opportunities open to men of 70 to 
80 I Q (mental age 11 to 13 years). The evolution 
of modern industrial organization together with the 
mechanization of processes by machinery is making 
possible a larger and larger utilization of inferior men- 
tality. One man with ability to think and plan guides 
the labor of ten or twenty laborers, who do what they 
are told to do and have little need for resourcefulness 
or initiative. It is even suggested that our chief diffi- 
culty may soon be to provide enough suitable jobs for 
those of higher intellectual capacity. We can at least 
rest assured that society has and will continue to have 
place enough for workers of decidedly inferior intelli- 
gence provided they are given a training which is suf- 
ficiently practical and concrete. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE ' 277 

Street-car employees and salesgirls. C. W. Waugh 
tested 82 street-car motormen and conductors, 61 
salesgirls in a large department store, 7 railroad engi- 
neers, and 4 department store " buyers." The men- 
tal ages found for these groups were as follows: 



Mental aee 


9-7 
to 


l<V-7 
to 


11-7 
to 


12-7 
to 


13-7 
to 


14-7 
to 


15-7 
to 


16-7 
to 


17-7 
to 


Street-oar men.... 
Salesgirls. 


10-6 
1 
2 


11-6 
3 

4 


12-6 
15 
14 


13-6 
19 
11 


14-6 
18 
3 


16-6 
14 
12 


16-6 
8 
8 


17-6 
3 
1 


18-6 
1 
1 














2 


2 


1 


1 


"Buyers" 














1 


2 


1 






















TotaL 


3 


7 


29 


80 


26 


28 


19 


7 


4 























The medians were as follows: 

Street-carmen 13-8 (IQ85.6) 

Salesgirls 1S-6 (IQ84.5) 

Engineers 16.0 (TQlOO) 

Buyers 17.0 (IQ106) 

The work of a street-car motorman or conductor 
rates as semi-skilled. The investigation showed that 
an I Q of 80 to 90 is entirely satisfactory for this kind 
of work provided other traits are favorable. However, 
a study of the ratings given the men for efficiency indi- 
cated that a 75 I Q is an unsafe risk either for motor- 
man or conductor. The one testing lowest, 10-5, 1 Q 
65, had a low efficiency rating l and at the time of the 
test was laid off because of a serious accident caused 



1 Unfortunately the original data of this investigation were lost 
before the correlations of I Q with ratings could be computed. 



278 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

by his carelessness. On the oth3r hand, the data 
suggested that intelligence above 00 or 100 I Q adds 
nothing to the efficiency of a motorman or conductor, 
and that it conduces to discontent. Most of those of 
highest I Q stated that they were only engaged in the 
work because of bad luck or unfavorable labor condi- 
tions and that they looked forward to getting some- 
thing better. Men testing around 80 or 85 usually 
seemed contented and proud of their jobs. 

The work done by the salesgirls would rate all the 
way from unskilled to semi-skilled, or in general 
slightly lower than the work of street-car conductors 
and motormen. The I Q distribution for salesgirls, 
however, was about the same as that for street-car 
men. This is another illustration of what is probably 
generally true in our present industrial organization, 
that the economic situation for men of a given I Q is 
considerably easier than for women of the same intel- 
lectual ability. The data for motormen, conductors, 
firemen, and policemen indicate that an I Q of 85 
among men receives about the same economic rewards 
as an I Q of 100 to 120 among women, taking the 
average elementary teacher, or high-grade stenogra- 
pher as typical of this class. 

Business men. Knollin and Zeidler tested 30 busi- 
ness men of moderate success and limited educational 
advantages. The subjects were typical of the kind of 
men who own or manage the ordinary stores, barber 
shops, draying business, etc., in a small town. None 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 279 



had graduated from a high school, and only two had 
attended school above the eighth grade. None had 
accumulated any considerable fortune, and none had 
failed outright in business. The following mental 
ages were found: 



Mental ages... 
Number. 


13 to 13-11 
1 


14 to 14-11 
6 


15 to 15-11 

7 


16 to 16-11 
8 


17 to 17-11 
6 


18 to 18-11 
2 



The median mental age was 16-2 (I Q 102). The 
lowest fourth were below 15-0 (I Q 93.6), and the 
highest fourth above 17.2 (I Q 107). The only indi- 
vidual testing below 14 runs a successful delicatessen 
establishment. There is no doubt about his inferior 
intelligence (I Q 81), but he is exceptionally industri- 
ous and is aided by a wife who is reputed to be " the 
brains " of the business. This was the only I Q below 
88. The group as a whole presents an interesting con- 
trast with the unskilled and semi-skilled groups tested 
by Waugh and Flanders. 

Tests of college students. Stanford-Bine! tests 
were given under the direction of Coover to 62 stu- 
dents in a psychology class at Stanford University. 
The group was fairly representative of the student 
body above the freshman year. The distribution of 
I Q's was as follows: 



I Q's 

Number 


85-89 


90-04 
1 


95-99 
1 


100-104 
5 


105-109 
13 


110-114 
17 


11&-119 
20 


120-122 
5 



280 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The median I Q was 113. One fourth tested below 
108 and one fourth above 117. The lowest I Q was 94. 

Dr. June Downey tested 42 freshmen and 49 upper- 
classmen of the University of Wyoming. 1 The me- 
dian scores for the three groups were: Freshmen, 
16-8 (I Q 104); upperclassmen, 17-2 (I Q 108). The 
I Q distribution for all of Dr. Downey's students taken 
together was as follows: 



IQ'8 

Number 


85-89 
3 


90-94 
4 


95-09 

7 


100-104 
27 


105-109 
17 


110-114 
21 


115-119 
8 


120-122 
4 


Median 
106 



Dr. Downey found for the members of her psychol- 
ogy class a correlation of .527 between I Q and her 
own estimates of intelligence (previously made). In 
regard to the relative accuracy of the tests and her 
ratings, Dr. Downey adds: " More intimate acquaint- 
ance with the class convinced me, moreover, that the 
I Q's were much more accurate than my unaided judg- 
ment. In a number of instances I was able to deter- 
mine just the factor that had led me astray." 

In a majority of cases the results of the tests agreed 
fairly well with class marks. Of the seven freshmen 
who tested below I Q 94, only one returned for work 
the following year. "This is her third year in the 
freshman class, a hopeless drifting from one depart- 
ment to another." 



1 Downey, June E., "The Stanford Adult Intelligence Tests," 
Journal of Delinquency, 1917, pp. 144-55. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 281 

As would be expected, some students did much bet- 
ter or much poorer work than the I Q would suggest. 
The following are typical cases of such disagreement: 

" Young man. Passed every test in the scale, but 
is noted for his many failures in courses. His reputa- 
tion in college is that of a young man of ability who 
chooses to turn his talents in other than academic 
directions." 

"A girl, whose very poor work led us to expect a 
record very much lower than she gave. Shyness and 
indifference are, I believe, the cause of her poor work. 
A little extra attention in class convinced me of the 
accuracy of the test results." She is described as 
having ability to give "precise and brief answers to 
questions " and to " hit the nail on the head once her 
interest is aroused." 

The tests of college students justify the conclusion 
that the student bodies of colleges and universities are 
recruited mainly from those whose intelligence is con- 
siderably above the median for people in general. This 
is true to an even greater extent than the I Q's found 
would indicate, since, as we have explained elsewhere 
(p. 147) the Stanford-Binet does not adequately meas- 
ure adults of exceptionally superior ability. In all 
probability the large majority of college students 
would as children in the grammar grades have tested 
between 100 and 130, with a median of perhaps 115 
to 120. A certain number would probably have 
tested between 90 and 100, but the chances are remote 



882 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

that a child testing much below 90 will ever be able to 
satisfy the requirements for college graduation. Chil- 
dren who test below 100 should ordinarily not be en- 
couraged to look forward to entrance into law, medi- 
cine, the ministry, engineering, teaching, or any other 
profession which demands a high degree of ability in 
abstract or conceptual thinking. Substantial success 
in such professions is probably achieved only by indi- 
viduals above the 115 or 120 I Q class. 

Tests of social and industrial failures. Knollin 
tested 154 " migrating unemployed " men who sought 
temporary shelter at the " hobo hotel *' of Palo Alto, 
California. Many of these were tramps by profession; 
some were merely traveling by foot to other parts of 
the State in search of employment. The mental ages 
found were as follows: 



Mental 
ages 

Number 


7to 
7-11 

1 


8 to 
8-11 

3 


9 to 

a-n 

4 


10 to 
10-11 

5 


11 to 
11-11 

16 


12 to 
12-11 

16 


13 to 
13-11 

27 


14 to 
14W1 

28 


16 to 
15-11 

24 


1C to 
16-11 

15 


17 to 
17-11 

10 


18 to 
18-11 

5 



The median mental age was 14-2 (I Q 89). The 
lowest 5 per cent were below 12-7 (I Q 79), the high- 
est 25 per cent above 15-8 (I Q 98). 

Johnson gave the Stanford-Binet tests to 107 desti- 
tute men picked at random from the unemployed cared 
for by various social service organizations in Portland, 
Oregon. 1 The following mental ages were found: 

1 Johnson, Glenn R., "Unemployed and Feeble-Mindedness," 
Journal of Delinquency, 1917, pp. 59-73. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 283 



Mental age 


7 


8 


9 


10 


11 


1? 


11 


14 


15 


16 


17 


18 


19 




0, 





4 


7 


6 


9 


17 


19 


12 


10 


9 


g 


3 































It will be seen that the proportion of low-grade cases 
is larger in the unemployed groups than for conductors, 
motormen, salesgirls, or express company employees. 
About 5.5 per cent of Johnson's group test below 10 
years, and 12 per cent below 11 years. The corre- 
sponding figure for Knollin's group are 5.2 per cent 
and 8.4 per cent. However, so many of the unem- 
ployed have average or superior intelligence that the 
median mental age for the two unemployed groups 
combined is 14-3, and the median I Q 89. This 
median exceeds that found for street-car men, sales- 
girls and the San Jos6 civil service applicants, but is 
considerably lower than the median for business men 
and railroad engineers. 

From the point of view of vocational education and 
vocational guidance the above facts are very signifi- 
cant. Plainly, unemployment in the case of the large 
majority of these men is not accounted for by their 
lack of intelligence. More than 60 per cent had intel- 
ligence fully equal to that of the average of the 82 
regularly employed street-car employees. At least 
10 per cent of them were the intellectual equals of the 
average Stanford University student, and probably 
25 per cent were intellectually capable of graduating 
from a high school. 

Even prisoners and juvenile delinquents, among 



284 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

whom the proportion of feeble-mindedness is admit- 
tedly high, are more often than not well within the 
bounds of intellectual normality. Prom the scores of 
studies of prison and reform-school inmates, the data 
of Williams may be presented as typical. The men- 
tal ages found among 184 delinquent youths over six- 
teen years of age at the Whittier State School were as 
follows: 



Mental 
ages 

Delin- 
quents 


7 to 
7-11 

1 


8 to 
8-11 

3 


9 to 
9-11 

13 


10 to 
10-11 

28 


11 to 
11-11 

31 


12 to 
12-11 

33 


13 to 
13-11 

32 


14 to 
14-11 

16 


15 to 
15-11 

9 


1C to 
10-11 

12 


17 to 
17-11 

6 


18 to 
18-11 



The median mental ages for these delinquents is 
12-6, and the median I Q 78. Probably two thirds 
of the entire number are intelligent enough to make 
good unskilled workers. Similar facts were found in 
the case of 150 consecutive entrants at the San 
Quentin State Prison, California, who were tested by 
Knollin. Nearly half of the prisoners were equal in 
intelligence to the average street-car employee (semi- 
skilled labor) while several were as intelligent as the 
average college student. 

Those who have made psychological studies of juve- 
nile delinquents, prisoners, and the unemployed have 
placed the emphasis upon the large amount of feeble- 
mindedness found. All will admit that a large propor- 
tion of both groups are defective or border-line cases, 
perhaps 20 or 25 per cent of prison and reform- 
school inmates and possibly 10 per cent of those out of 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 285 

employment .in an average city under average eco- 
nomic conditions. It would be a serious mistake, 
however, if our concern over the necessity of social 
control for defectives should lead us to overlook the 
large majority in both groups who, as far as intelli- 
gence is concerned, may be considered potential social 
assets of great value. It would be interesting to know 
to what extent the failure of such individuals could be 
prevented by such measures as vocational education, 
vocational guidance, and courses of study sufficiently 
differentiated to fit the abilities and to satisfy the 
interests of all the children who are above the dead- 
line of mental deficiency. It will be noted that 45 
per cent of Johnson's unemployed and not far 
from 70 per cent of the delinquents fall within the 
range 70 to 89 I Q. This is the range which fur- 
nishes the majority of school dullards. When we 
investigate the school histories of men who test be- 
tween 70 and 80 we are almost certain to find a record 
of low marks, failure, and serious retardation. Those of 
the 80 to 90 class have usually failed less seriously, but 
have rarely shown the ability to get much beyond the 
eighth grade. The majority of the 70 to 85 class have 
left school between the fifth and eighth grade with little 
preparation for life or life's work. It is no wonder that 
many fail and drift easily into the ranks of the anti- 
social or join the army of Bolshevik discontents. 

For convenience the I Q distributions of the various 
vocational groups described in this chapter are brought 



86 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

together in Table 40. The scores of 6 railroad engi- 
neers and 4 department-store " buyers " are thrown in 
with those of Knollin's 30 business men. The data 
for Knollin's hoboes and Johnson's destitute men are 
also combined, as the I Q distributions were about the 
same for the two groups. For each group the median 
I Q is given, also the I Q which marks off the lowest 
fourth of those in the group. 





Per cent in each I Q group 


Vocational 




group 


No. 
cases 


50- 
59 


60- 
69 


70- 
79 


80- 
89 


90- 
99 


100- 
109 


110- 
119 


120- 
122 


Me- 
dian 
IQ 


Lowest 
fourth 
below 


College 
























students... 
Busiueas 


153 











1.9 


8.5 


40.5 


43.1 


5.9 


109 


104 I Q 




40 








7.5 


37.5 


42.5 


12.5 




102 


<Y7 T Q 


Express 


















"" 




ft JL \l 


employees 
Motormeu 


47 





4.3 


4.3 


23.4 


19.1 


19.1 


17.2 


12.7 


95 


87 IQ 


and con- 
























ductors. . . . 
Firemen 


82 


- 


3.7 


23.1 


30.5 


32.9 


7.3 


2.4 


- 


86 


79 I Q 


and police- 
























men 


30 
61 


" 


6.7 
8.2 


26.7 
29.5 


36.7 
24.6 


20. 
26.2 


6.7 
8.2 


3.3 
3.3 





84 
85 


78 I Q 
77 I Q 


Salesgirls... 
Hoboes and 


unem- 
























ployed 


256 


6.4 


14.1 


21.1 


26.9 


16. 


9.7 


5-1 


1.1 


89 


71 I Q 



TABLE 40. I Q DISTRIBUTION OF VARIOUS VOCATIONAL GROUPS 

Educational guidance. In vocational guidance the 
best that intelligence tests can do is to indicate roughly 
the vocational level in which success is possible. The 
final choice of a vocation must be determined largely 
by interest and opportunity. For all we know, law, 
medicine, engineering, teaching and the ministry make 
about equal demands upon general intelligence. Per- 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 387 

haps carpentry, masonry, plumbing, blacksmithing, 
etc., require about the same amount of intelligence as 
dozens of other skilled trades. However, intelligence 
tests can tell us whether a child's native ability cor- 
responds approximately to the median found in the 
professions, the semi-professional pursuits, the ordi- 
nary skilled trades, the semi-skilled trades, among un- 
skilled laborers, etc., and this information is of great 
value in planning a child's education. Itjs^aqcordr, 
ingly in educational guidance that intelligence tests 
EaveTtHeiip chief value. 

Tables 28 to 35 (pp. 159-162) have shown the school 
progress that may be expected of various grades of 
intelligence, and the facts set forth in other chapters 
have indicated the relation of intelligence to elimina- 
tion and to the ability to master high-school or college 
courses. The universal testing of school children 
would save many a disappointment, A certain woman 
of intelligence and education has a daughter who at 
the age of seventeen years tested at 78, and was still 
in the seventh grade. Yet the mother had not given 
up the hope that the daughter might become a sten- 
ographer. A college professor with a twelve-year-old 
son who tested at 83 was planning to send him through 
college. The boy will be fortunate to complete the 
eighth grade. Such children are sometimes badgered 
and urged on until life is a burden. The son of a cer- 
tain lawyer has always tested at 80 to 85. He wishes 
to become a gardener, and his profitable success in 



288 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tilling numerous vacant lots sufficiently attests his 
ability in this line. The father, however, insists that 
his son must have a college education. To this end 
he scolds, coaxes, and employs private tutors. His 
best efforts, however, have only brought the boy to 
the second year of high school at the age of twenty 
years. The boy comprehends nothing that he is 
taught and keenly dislikes school. 

On the other hand, it is by no means uncommon for 
exceptionally bright children to be apprenticed early 
to occupations which require but mediocre intelligence. 
Anything above 85 1 Q in the case of a barber probably 
represents so much dead waste; yet we know a barber 
who is as intelligent as the average college student. 
Although in our country the industrial lines of cleav- 
age are not rigid enough to prevent ready shift from 
one occupation to another, provided one determines 
to make the shift, it must not be forgotten that, after 
all, men are largely creatures of habit and after a cer- 
tain age do not find it easy to adjust to the require- 
ments of a new vocation. If we knew the total waste 
of mental ability we should probably be appalled. The 
waste is probably enormous in the case of women, 
because of the limited number of vocational oppor- 
tunities open to them. 

^ The conservation of talent. A nation's intellectual 
assets are the most precious it will ever have, and the 
principle of conservation will find here its most useful 
application. 



TESTS AND VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE 289 

In the conservation of talent the teacher occupies a 
strategic position. It is her duty to foster in a pupil 
the highest ambitions which are consonant with his 
intellectual endowment. To expect that she will be 
able to estimate a pupil's endowment accurately 
enough by mere observation is to expect too much. 
We have known so many bright children who were 
seriously underrated by their teachers that the neces- 
sity of the test method, as a supplement to observa- 
tion, seems hardly open to question. If tests were 
more commonly given we should probably find many 
children like the following: 

A. B. was twelve years old and in the sixth grade. 
He was failing, or at any rate his work was unsatis- 
factory to the teacher. As a matter of fact she did 
not promote him at the end of the term. The father 
consulted Mr. Virgil E. Dickson, the psychologist of 
the city schools, who gave the boy a mental test. The 
I Q was approximately 140. Apparently A. B. had a 
grade of ability not equaled by more than one child in 
two hundred. Inquiry disclosed the fact that the boy 
had formed a dislike for his teacher. This teacher 
required her pupils to copy from the dictionary the 
definition of all the new words encountered in each 
lesson. When A. B. said he knew all the words she 
accused him of untruthfulness. In reality his vocabu- 
lary was equal to that of the average teacher. The 
case deserved radical treatment and got it. Mr. Dick- 
son, notwithstanding the boy's non-promotion in the 



290 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

sixth grade, arranged for him to skip both the seventh 
and the eighth grade and to enter high school immedi- 
ately! He did so, and passed all his work with good 
marks. For some months his teachers were not told 
of the heresy that had been committed, and they never 
suspected that the pupil had not come to them in the 
usual way. Cases of this kind suggest an explanation 
for the traditional but incorrect belief that a majority 
of great men and women were dull or mediocre in 
childhood. 



CHAPTER XIH 

PRACTICAL SUGGESTIONS FOR THE USE OF MENTAL 
TESTS i 

Teachers must learn to use tests. Unless the rank 
and file of teachers learn to use tests the universal 
grading of children according to mental ability -will 
remain largely a Utopian dream. We cannot agree 
with those who hold that Binet tests should not be 
attempted by teachers. Teachers are universally 
encouraged to use such educational measurements as 
the Courtis tests, handwriting scales, and tests of 
ability in reading, history, and composition. Yet, it 
is fully as difficult to learn the correct procedure for a 
" battery " of six or eight standard educational tests 
as to acquire a reasonable facility in the use of the 
Binet scale. It should be emphasized, however, that 
wherever possible the use of both educational and in- 
telligence tests should be supervised, either by a psy- 
chologist or by some one else who has had extended 
experience in their use and in the interpretation of 
results. It is here that the psychologist finds his 
proper task, rather than in giving the tests himself. 
The public school psychologist, for example, cannot 
himself give more than 800 to 1000 Binet tests in a 

1 See also Terrain, Lewis M., The Measurement of Intelligence 
(Houghton Mifflin Co., 1916); pp. 362. 



892 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

school year, but he can supervise the testing and 
grading of 10,000 by taking advantage of the help 
which teachers can give. This method not only in- 
creases the number of pupils who will be graded more 
nearly in accordance witl* their abilities; it also effec- 
tively stimulates the teacher's interest in her children. 

Preparation needed for Binet testing. However, 
no one should attempt to use the Binet scale without 
careful preparation. The training needed can be 
given effectively in the normal school. A half-year 
course of three lessons per week, or a somewhat shorter 
course with five lessons per week, will serve the pur- 
pose if it is properly supplemented by other courses 
in educational psychology. Such a course should (1) 
introduce the student to the nature and extent of 
individual differences among children; (2) show the 
bearing of these upon school grading; (3) explain the 
fundamental principles underlying intelligence test- 
ing; and (4) give a fair degree of mastery of the Binet 
procedure. The use of at least one scale for group test- 
ing should als6 be taught. The course should include 
actual testing by the student as well as demonstration 
tests. Courses of this kind should be considered an 
indispensable part of the normal-school curriculum. 

Meanwhile, what about the teacher in service who 
has not had the advantage of such instruction? Must 
she continue to rely on guesswork for the classifica- 
tion of her pupils? A fairly extended experience has 
convinced us that this is not necessary. With a little 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS 293 

help the average teacher can prepare herself to use 
standardized mental tests accurately enough for prac- 
tical purposes. If there is a psychologist in the school 
system the problem can be solved by forming Saturday 
or afternoon classes for givirtg the needed instruction. 
If no psychologist is available, some one else can often 
be found in the school system who is capable of 
directing the work, perhaps the director of special 
classes, or a principal who has had some training in 
the use of tests. A six-weeks course in a summer ses- 
sion of a normal school or university will also provide 
the necessary training. 

How to learn the Binet procedure without instruc- 
tion. If no help is available the earnest teacher need 
not hesitate to undertake the task alone. It is best to 
begin by first mastering the contents of two or three 
books dealing with individual differences and the 
principles of mental testing. Then the Binet pro- 
cedure should be carefully studied. Merely to read 
through a description of the tests is not sufficient. 
The directions should be studied with the closest 
attention to the finer details of procedure, and to the 
method of scoring, computing mental age, etc. The 
significance of mental age as a basis of school grading 
and of the I Q for forecasting a child's later develop- 
ment should receive special attention. Actual testing 
may then be begun, preferably with the help of the 
Record Booklet prepared for use with the Stanford- 
Binet Scale. This contains appropriate spaces for 



294 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

the verbatim recording of results, and gives abbrevi- 
ated directions for scoring. It also saves memory 
strain and prevents error by supplying the exact word- 
ing for many of the tests. 

After testing one or two children the instructions 
should be read through again, and each step in the 
procedure noted. This always brings certain points 
into relief which have escaped notice. By thus 
checking up her procedure after each test the teacher 
will acquire a sureness and a degree of accuracy which 
nothing else can give. After fifteen or twenty tests 
the mental age secured should be substantially the 
same as a trained psychologist would get, assuming 
that the teacher has studied the directions with con- 
scientious care and has learned not to take liberties 
with them. 

It is necessary to understand, from the very begin- 
ning, that an apparently trivial alteration of a test 
may so change its nature as to invalidate the results. 
The formula for each test should be adhered to strictly. 
Questions should ordinarily not be repeated except 
when the instructions indicate that it is permissible 
to do so. It is necessary to avoid leading questions 
and other fonnsf of unintentional aid. If the child's 
answer is not dear, the question " What do you mean? '* 
is usually sufficient and is practically the only form of 
supplementary question allowable. 

A free and easy manner with the child should be 
assiduously cultivated. Timidity must be overcome 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS 295 

so that the child will do his best without undue coax- 
ing. If the child's confidence is to be gained, it is 
necessary to take his efforts seriously, however absurd 
they may appear. Attention should never be called 
to errors. Apart from such some vague commenda- 
tion as " You have done beautifully," etc., the child 
should be told nothing of the result of the test. 

The examination should be thorough. It should 
extend down the scale far enough to include at least 
one year in which there is no failure, and up far enough 
to include at least a year in which there is no success. 
By using only the six regular tests in each year the 
examination can ordinarily be completed in thirty to 
forty minutes with younger subjects, or in fifty minutes 
with older ones. With subjects of the high-school 
level a little more time is occasionally necessary. At 
first the time is prolonged by the recording of replies, 
which should always be done as nearly as possible 
verbatim. A little experience and the liberal use of 
abbreviations soon enables one to do this without 
retarding the examination appreciably. 

Learning to score. The responses, if recorded, 
should be scored immediately after the examination 
has been completed. If responses are not recorded, 
the scoring must be done as the examination proceeds. 
Wherever there is the slightest doubt as to the satis- 
f actoriness of a response, the guide should be consulted 
and followed. Since the scale has been standardized 
on a definite basis of scoring, it is evident that unless 



296 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

this rule is adhered to, the resulting mental age and 
I Q lose their significance. The teacher must learn 
to suppress her personal judgment as to how a test 
ought to be given or scored, and to ask only the ques- 
tion how it is given. With conscientious effort the 
errors of scoring can soon be reduced to a reasonable 



If a psychologist is available, the teacher's scoring 
should be checked up from the written responses until 
the right habits have been thoroughly established. 
This is the method followed by Dickson, who writes 
as follows regarding the errors made by twenty-one 
Oakland teachers in scoring several hundred tests: 

** Before the testing was begun, six lessons of 1 J hours each 
were given. Each teacher then tested her own pupils, and 
graded and marked her own tests. I then graded the tests 
myself, with the following results: 

No correction of mental age necessary 68 . & per cent 
Correction of months ............. 20 . 4 per cent 

Correction of 4 months .............. 10.8 per cent 

Correction of 6 months .............. 0.6 per cent" 

This excellent record is explained in part by the fact 
that the subjects were all first-grade pupils, so that the 
teachers were not compelled to learn the procedure 
and scoring for the tests below four years or above 
ten. It will be noted that hardly any errors necessi- 
tated a correction of more than 4 months in mental 
age. For the average first-grade child an error of this 



THE USE OP MENTAL TESTS 29? 

amount would affect the I Q to the extent of only 5 
points. 

We have elsewhere reported the errors of five univer- 
sity students in scoring 843 Binet tests. 1 The mental 
ages as computed by the students were correct 

within 2 months in 84.8 per cent of cases; 
within 4 months in 95.5 per cent of cases; 
within 6 months in 98.6 per cent of cases. 

The average error in I Q was about 1 point. Approxi- 
mately one third of the necessary corrections were due 
to arithmetical mistakes in counting the number of 
"plus*' marks, adding months of credit, or dividing 
mental age by chronological age. Practically all of 
the errors of more than G months in mental age, or of 
more than 5 to 8 points in I Q, were of this preventable 
kind. The counting and adding of credits and the divi- 
sion for I Q should always be done twice for each sub- 
ject. 

Tabulation of the errors in scoring the separate 
tests in the scale showed that two tests were responsi- 
ble for 30 per cent of the errors. These were the ball 
and field test and the description and interpretation 
of pictures. Others which gave rise to frequent errors 
were the following: definitions by use and superior 
to use, interpretation of fables, the comprehension 
questions, the diamond, designs, and definitions of ab- 

1 Terman, Lewis M., "Errors in Scoring Bitict Tests/' The 
P*y<:lit>l<>i/iMl Clinic, UU8, pp. & 



298 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

stract terms. The directions set forth in The Meas- 
urement of Intelligence for scoring these tests should 
be consulted again and again until they have been 
thoroughly mastered. 

The Interpretation and use of results. To acquire a 
reasonable degree of expertness in giving Binet tests is 
a much simpler matter than to learn how to interpret 
and use the results. We have written this book prima- 
rily to show concretely the significance of mental age 
and intelligence quotient in the grading of school chil- 
dren. While its careful study should aid the amateur 
to avoid gross errors in the use of results, there is 
much which experience alone can bring and much 
which only those of psychological training can ac- 
quire. In cities which employ a school psychologist 
the problem is simple enough; the teachers can make 
the tests and leave it to the psychologist to interpret 
the results and to utilize them in the classification 
of children. If there is no recognized expert in the 
school system the teacher must work with caution. 
She must learn to consider her interpretation of the 
test in a tentative light, and must avoid the risk of 
passing judgment in doubtful or apparently patho- 
logical cases. She must understand clearly that the 
mere ability to give a Binet test acceptably gives her 
no claim to the title " clinical psychologist/' If she will 
use the test simply as a means of getting a more ac- 
curate idea of a child's mental ability than she could 
get in any other way, she will be amply rewarded. 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS 299 

For obvious reasons the teacher should use discretion 
in talking about the results of the tests. That the 
child should not be told his mental age or I Q has al- 
ready been emphasized. The teacher will also find 
that it is generally unwise to discuss the test results 
with parents in very specific terms. Such expressions 
as " exceptionally bright," " mentally retarded," or 
"slow to learn," are usually harmless; but expressions 
like "dullard," "feeble-minded," "border-line," etc., 
should be avoided. Even if the parents know the child 
to be feeble-minded they resent the teacher's saying 
so, justly feeling that the diagnosis of mental defect 
is not within her province. This is the rule, but of 
course there are exceptions. The tactful teacher who 
has the confidence of the mother can sometimes talk 
with her quite frankly about the defects of her chil- 
dren. The teacher's attitude should always be one of 
sympathetic helpfulness. Levity or cynical remarks 
about the dullness of a pupil should always be avoided, 
It is best not to discuss I Q's and mental ages of in- 
dividual pupils too freely among acquaintances or 
even among colleagues. One never knows when or 
where a chance remark will be repeated. 

Above all, the teacher must learn not to interpret 
the results of her tests too literally and not to depend 
upon them too exclusively. The child is not all intel- 
ligence; his fitness to take up the work of a given grade 
is determined partly by such factors as health, indus- 
try, attitude toward school work, and regularity of at- 



800 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tendance. Immediate and wholesale re-grading of the 
school on the basis of mental age as soon as the tests 
have been completed is not recommended. It is best 
to begin with individual children who are most seriously 
misplaced, especially the very bright, who are nearly 
always one or two grades below where they belong. 
As one after another of these is found to continue to 
do good work after extra promotions, the teacher will 
gradually acquire confidence in her judgment and in 
the verdict of the tests. 

It is necessary, however, to avoid the danger of mak- 
ing a fetich of the I Q, which we have shown to be by 
no means infallible. An I Q of 85, for example, means 
no more nor less than that the child tested later will 
probably be found between 80 and 90. It does not 
mean that he may not later test as high as 100 or as 
low as 70, although the chances are roughly 2$ to 1 
against his doing so. Because of the possibility of such 
errors, however, it is necessary to check up the results 
of the tests in every possible way. The test should 
mark the beginning, not the end, of the teacher's 
study of a given child. As a point of departure the 
intelligence test is of great value; accepted as a final 
verdict it may lead to mistakes and disappointment. 
Children who cannot do the school work within at least 
one year of that corresponding to mental age should be 
studied. Usually a reason will be found. Perhaps the 
child lacks self-confidence. Possibly because of timid- 
ity his school work has not shown up at its full value. 



THE USE OP MENTAL TESTS 801 

Perhaps there has been lack of application. What- 
ever explanation is found, the teacher will understand 
the child in a way that would never have been possible 
without the insight which the test gives. Cases which 
continue doubtful or puzzling should be re-tested. 

The use of supplementary data. Before beginning 
her tests the teacher should secure the following data 
for each child: 

1. Age, in years and months; 

2. Years in school; 

8. Record of illnesses; 

4. Nationality of each parent; 

5. Occupation which supports the family; 

6. Data regarding the child's brothers and sisters. 

It also greatly enhances the value of test results if 
these can be compared with ratings based on observa- 
tion. For this purpose the teacher should rate each of 
her pupils for quality of school work, general intelli- 
gence, and two or three personal traits like dependa- 
bility, social adaptability, conscientiousness, etc. The 
ratings should be made on the basis of either a five- 
fold or seven-fold classification, as follows: 

Five-fold classification Seven-fold classification 

1. Very superior 1. Very superior 

$. Superior & Superior 

8. Average 8. High average 

4. Inferior 4. Average 

5. Very inferior 5. Low average 

6. Inferior 

7. Very inferior 



802 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

The ratings should, of course, be made in advance 
of the tests, in order that they may represent an inde- 
pendent judgment. Their comparison later with the 
test results will prove of surpassing interest. One pu- 
pil tests lower than he was rated, another higher. 
Why the discrepancy? In solving such problems, a 
good many of which are sure to arise in the testing of 
forty pupils, the teacher will gain an insight into the 
mentality and character of her children that will richly 
repay her for the somewhat difficult task of making 
the ratings. 

The teacher will find it especially interesting and 
instructive to compare her trait ratings with the I Q*s 
later found in the tests. By doing so she will see the 
dose correlation which usually exists between desira- 
ble traits. Notwithstanding occasional exceptions to 
the rule, she will find that usually the child she has 
rated high in conscientiousness, obedience, will power, 
sense of humor, etc., will earn a high I Q in the Binet 
test; the child she has rated low, an inferior I Q. 1 In 
this way she will come to appreciate the close connec- 
tion which often exists between unsatisfactory conduct 
and inferior intelligence. In connection with the other 
supplementary information the teacher will find it in- 
structive to compare the I Q of the various nationali- 
ties and occupational groups represented in her class. 

The Providence example. The city of Providence, 
Bhode Island, offers an excellent illustration of what 
1 See Figures 15, 16, and 17, p. 59. 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS SOS 

may be accomplished by training teachers in the use of 
mental tests. Under the leadership of Mr. Richard D. 
Allen, Director of Vocational Guidance, and of Miss 
Greene, Supervisor of Primary Instruction, large num- 
bers of the teachers of that city have been taught to 
give Binet tests. The instruction is given in a four- 
weeks course in the summer normal school, and in- 
cludes twenty practice tests. A teachers' dub of two 
hundred members has been formed for the purpose of 
promoting the grading of school children by mental 
ability. Miss Greene's work in testing first-grade chil- 
dren has already been mentioned. 1 Mr. Allen has 
kindly sent us the following information regarding 
this experiment: 

I found that at the beginning of my work with the tests 
there were a great many puzzling things. For example, I 
occasionally found pupils who tested low and were never- 
theless doing fair work. In such cases when I took the 
mental age into account I usually found that this was above 
the mental age of the children with whom they were com- 
peting. The facts were then easy to explain. I have yet to 
find a single case of the two thousand tests we have made in 
which the I Q and mental age do not throw valuable light 
upon the reasons for success or failure. 

Our tests show that 90 per cent, at least, of school retarda- 
tion is without doubt due to mental inferiority. There are 
very few seriously retarded children who do not do satis- 
factory work in school when they are placed in a grade which 
corresponds to mental age. One of the results of placing 
children of the same mental age together has been the cut- 
ting down of failures by fully 50 per cent. 
* Page 64, 



304 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

We have arranged to give an intelligence test to every 
child who leaves school to go to work, and we use the test 
in determining roughly the limits of the child's vocational 
possibilities. We have found, for example, that retarded 
boys who drop out of the fifth or sixth grade because of lack 
of ability to do the work often succeed well at painting or 
plain carpentry. The boys who test higher have, of course, 
a wider range of vocational possibilities. 

Concerning one group of 1016 children whose men- 
tal test and school work had been compared, Mr. 
Allen presents the following facts : 

1. Of sixty-seven who tested below 70 I Q, sixty-three 
made an average school mark of D or E. Of two hun- 
dred who tested above 110 1 Q, only four had an average 
school mark as low as D. 

S. Of the sixty-nine pupils testing below 70, all except 
seven were located in a grade above that corresponding 
to mental age. Of eighty-four pupils testing above 
120, every one was located in a grade below that cor- 
responding to mental age. Many were below-grade 
as much as three, four, or five years. 

8. Of one hundred and three children who are located in a 
grade either one and a half or two years above that cor- 
responding to mental age, over 90 per cent are failures. 

4. A great majority of the children who test under 90 
I Q never graduate from the grammar school. 

5. There is clearly a very close relation between the place- 
ment of a child in school and the quality of work he is 
able to perform. Scholarship plus chronological age 
plus the grade in which a child is located gives a fairly 
good basis for estimating the child's mental age. Con- 
versely, the I Q plus the mental age plus the grade 
gives a fairly clear estimate of the quality of the work 
which the child should be able to do. 



THE USE OP MENTAL TESTS 805 

Getting the testing done. The earlier in the term 
the tests are made the greater their value. Since the 
testing must ordinarily be done out of school hours, it is 
likely to be two or three months before the teacher can 
complete her " pupil survey." One test each afternoon 
will dispose of the difficult cases within a few weeks, 
and of the entire class in a month or two. Sometimes 
Saturdays can be utilized to advantage by making 
special appointments with pupils to come to the school 
for the purpose. Children invariably like to be tested, 
and are always willing to forego an hour of play for the 
experience. The teacher will not long regard the work 
as an additional burden. The interest in seeing how the 
different children respond to the same tests grows to the 
point of fascination. The work is also made easier by 
noting how the experience adds to the pupil's feeling of 
intimacy toward the teacher. To test a child skillfully 
nearly always means to win a devoted little friend. 

The tests should be made, however, even though 
they can only come at the middle or end of the term, 
as the results can be used to great advantage in decid- 
ing doubtful cases of promotion or double-promotion. 
The teacher should record the results in full for each 
child in a little book to be kept in her desk for handy 
reference. The record should include, after the child's 
name, the age (in years and months), the mental age, 
the I Q, the nationality of each parent, the occupation 
that supports the home, and the various ratings on 
school work, intelligence, and other traits. If educa- 



306 INTELLIGENCE OP SCHOOL CHILDREN 

tional tests have been given, the results of these should 
be recorded here also. The teacher who keeps such a 
record will soon come to look upon it as indispensable. 

The testing should be carried on in such a way as 
not to excite undue comment among the pupils. The 
teacher will, of course, refrain from speaking of the 
tests as " intelligence tests." She may refer to them 
merely as " tests to see what children can do." She 
can avoid creating apprehension by beginning with the 
brightest pupils. She will thus prevent the idea get- 
ting abroad that to be given a test means to be sus- 
pected of mental inferiority. It is never advisable or 
necessary to test a child against his will. After a few 
have been given a test the others are invariably anx- 
ious to have the same privilege. 

The use of abbreviated tests. When possible each 
child should be given a complete Binet test, but if 
time does not permit this the teacher can make a fairly 
satisfactory survey of her pupils by means of an ab- 
breviated form of the scale which requires no more 
than ten to twenty minutes per pupil, according to 
the form of abbreviation used. Although the brief 
test falls a good deal short of the complete test in re- 
liability, it is far better than nothing. 

The following abbreviations of the Stanford Revi- 
sion will be found serviceable: 

1. The four tests of each year group (six in year 18) indi- 
cated in the record booklet by stars. Time required, 
approximately 30 minutes. 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS 307 

& Any three tests chosen at random from each year group 
(but four in year 12). Time, approximately 20 minutes. 
8. The vocabulary test alone. Time, 8 to 10 minutes. 

When fewer than the regular number of tests are 
used in a year group it is of course necessary to increase 
the value of each test in months in proportion to the 
reduction of number. In the year groups below 1& ? 
each test has a value of months when all six are used 
in each year, of 3 months when four tests are used, 
and of 4 months when only three tests are used. The 
same principle holds in the upper part of the scale. 
In year 12, for example, each test has a value of 3 
months when all eight are given, of 4 months when 
six are given, and of 6 months when four are given. 
Perhaps the surest way to avoid errors of weighting 
tests is to follow the rule of giving either all the regular 
tests or only half of them in each year. If only half 
are given, the regular weighting would of course be 
doubled and the tests of the different year groups 
would have values as follows: 

Years I to X 4 months 

Year XIE 6 months 

Year XIV 8 months 

Year XVI 10 months 

Year XVHI 12 months 

This form of abbreviation can be given to younger 
children in fifteen to twenty minutes. Either the first 
half of the tests can be given in each year group, or 
they can be selected according to the limitations of 



308 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

time or the preference of the examiner. Otis 1 has de- 
termined statistically the reliability of either half of 
the Stanford-Binet Scale, when it is thus split in two 
vertically. His study shows the probable error of an 
I Q to be about 4.5 points when half the scale is used 
and about 3 points when all of it is used. This means 
that in fifty per cent of the cases the I Q found when 
half the scale is used would fall within the range of 4| 
points above or 4j points below the true I Q; and that 
the I Q found when the entire scale is used is in fifty 
per cent of cases within the range of 3 points above or 
3 points below the true I Q. Half the scale is thus 
accurate enough for most practical purposes. 

The vocabulary test as a brief intelligence scale. 
Where a hasty preliminary sifting of the pupils is 
necessary it is recommended that the vocabulary test 
be used by itself. It should be given to one child at 
a time, taken alone, and requires on an average only 
about eight or ten minutes. If the complete Binet 
test is given later the vocabulary scores can be added 
in and no time will have been lost. 



Mental age. 


7 


8 


9 


10 


11 


12 


13 


14 


15 


16 


17 


18 


19 


Median vocabu- 




























lary 


IB 


18 


93 


30 


85 


41 


46 


51 


57 


fi 


fi7 


73 


75 































On the basis of the above mental age standards, 
the Stanford vocabulary test gives a mental age cor- 

1 Otis,' Arthur S., "The Reliability of the Binet Scale," The Pay* 
chologicol Clinic, 1919. 



THE USE OP MENTAL TESTS 809 

rect within one year in about 60 per cent of cases, and 
within a year and a half in 80 per cent of cases. 

The teacher will doubtless be surprised that any 
single test requiring only ten minutes could possess 
this degree of accuracy. One might very well sup- 
pose that the child's vocabulary would depend upon 
home environment and formal instruction, that it 
would be an index of special rather than general abil- 
ity, and that anyway it could not be accurately enough 
measured by a list of 100 words selected at random 
from the dictionary. As we have shown elsewhere, 
all of these theoretical objections are contradicted by 
the facts. 1 

That it measures general intelligence rather than 
special ability is shown by the high correlation of 
vocabulary score with Stanford-Binet mental ages. 
Table 41 shows that the correlation for 681 school 
children was .91. 

The probable error of a mental age based on the 
vocabulary score alone is approximately 9| months. 
This means that 50 per cent of the vocabulary mental 
ages would deviate less than 9j months from the 
mental age resulting from a complete Stanford-Binet 
test. It would deviate more than 12 months in only 
40 per cent of cases and more than 4 months in only 
10 per cent of cases. 

1 Terman, Lewis M., Kohs, S. C., and others: "The Vocabulary 
Test as a Measure of Intelligence," Journal of Educational Psychol- 
ogy, October, 1918. 



c*c4eQcoi-ic*e4co 



II 



. ,,H .^WOOOOrj^fr-tt 



j ^ 



ti-t : : 11*4*110*4 : 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS 311 

The vocabulary is much less influenced by the cul- 
tural status of the home than one would expect. The 
following illustration is typical: A. B., the feeble- 
minded son of a college professor, is 14 years old and 
tests at the mental age of 11 by the Stanford-Binet. 
His vocabulary score alone indicated a mental age of 
11-4. The exceptional language environment of this 
boy had raised his vocabulary only a third of a year 
above his general mental level. The influence of 
exceptionally poor language environment is also very 
slight. E. is a Portuguese boy whose parents speak 
only broken English. This boy, the brightest we have 
tested from a Portuguese family, tested at the mental 
age of 18-6 when he was 14-5 chronologically. His 
vocabulary score (70 words) was equal to the median 
for first-year college students. The extreme poverty 
of his language environment had not prevented his 
vocabulary from keeping pace with his general level 
of intelligence. 

A vocabulary test of 100 words is sufficient to meas- 
ure an individual's total vocabulary very accurately. 
When several different word lists of this kind are used 
with the same subject they give approximately the 
same result. The probable error of a vocabulary 
score for a 100 word list is about 2 words, and since 
each word in the list represents 180 words in the dic- 
tionary, the probable error of total vocabulary based 
on the test is 360 words. For example, if a subject 
defines 40 words correctly his total vocabulary figures 



312 INTELLIGENCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN 

at 40 X ISO, 1 or 7200 words. The chances are 50 to 
50 that this subject's actual vocabulary lies within the 
range of 7200 plus or minus 360; i.e., between 6840 and 
7560. The chances are 22 to 1 that the total vocab- 
ulary as calculated from the score in the vocabulary 
test will not be found to deviate from the true vocab- 
ulary by more than 1000 words. 

Group tests. Above the third grade the prelimi- 
nary sifting and classification can be done most expe- 
ditiously by means of some of the recently devised 
group tests. These can be given simultaneously to 
all the pupils of a class in fifty to sixty minutes. 
Some of the group tests have the great advantage 
that they require no extended training either for giv- 
ing or scoring. The scoring is done mechanically by 
means of stencils, and requires about ten minutes per 
pupil. The tests can be given as a regular school 
exercise, and the scoring can be done at the teacher's 
convenience out of school hours. 2 

While no scale has been devised for group testing 

1 The Stanford vocabulary list was constructed by selecting every 
180th word in a dictionary containing 18,000 words. 

* The best scale for group testing available at present is that 
of Arthur S. Otis, published by the World Book Company, Yonkers, 
New York. Another, which will have a more extensive experimental 
basis, is being prepared by an investigating board composed of M. E. 
Haggerty, L. M. Terman, E. L. Thorndike, G. M. Whipple, and 
R. M. Yerkes. It should be ready for use early in 1920. The in- 
vestigation was made possible by an appropriation of $25,000 by 
the General Education Board of the Rockefeller Foundation. 

For blanks or information address the Section of Psychology, 
National Research Council, Washington, D.C. 



THE USE OF MENTAL TESTS SIS 

which yields as dependable results as the Binet 
method, the group tests are deserving of wide vogue. 
There should be no rivalry between the group method 
and the individual method of testing, as each supple- 
ments the other. All the pupils above the third or 
fourth grade should be given a group test annually. 
We may confidently expect this practice to become 
common in the no distant future. The individual 
method will find its field in the first three grades, 
and in the more thorough examination of children in 
the upper grades who make exceptional scores in the 
group test. 



INDEX 



Acceleration, and retardation, 72. 

Adenoids, 151, 188. 

Age, promotion by, 27, 28, 97, 
158; influence on ability to do 
school work, 48, 49; of learning 
to read, 178; of walking and 
talking, 187, 188. 

Allen, Richard D., on Binet tests, 
803, 304. 

Ayres, Leonard P., Laggards in 
our Schools, 111. 

Backward children, schools for, 
42, 43; vocational training for, 
132. 

Berry, Charles Scott, 114. 

Binet, Alfred, 1, 6. 

BinetrSimon Intelligence Scale, 
the, 2, 5, 12, 25; preparation 
needed for use of, 292-302. See 
also Stanford-Bine! scale. 

Business men, intelligence tests 
of, 278, 279. 

Campbell, Dr. Macfie, 125. 

Class sectioning, 266. 

College students, intelligence tests 

of, 279-281. 
Comparison, need of absolute 

standard of, 70. 

Compensation, the theory of, 57. 
Cummings, Blanche, 144, 233. 
Cuneo, Irene, tests made by, 30, 

32, 34, 36, 37, 50, 51, 146. 
Curriculum, 29, 32, 90. 

Dickson, Virgil E., 42, 119, 296; 
tests made by, 43, 44, 47, 48, 
52, 55, 56, 57; predicts as to 
school progress, 61, 62; on cause 
of retardation, 63, 64; striking 
result of a mental test by, 289, 
290. 

Discrepancies between mental 
age and school performance,97- 



99; tests showing effect of un- 
usual application, 99; of child's 
personality, 100, 101; of timid- 
ity and lack of self-confidence, 
102; of mental inertia, 102, 103; 
of emotional or nervous tenden- 
cies, 103, 104; of "home spoil- 
ing," 104, 105; of physical de- 
fects, 105; of love affairs and 
day dreaming, 105, 106. 
Downey, Dr. June E., 280. 

Educational guidance, 268, 286- 
288. 

Educational lock-step, 74. 

Elimination, high-school, 86-89. 

Environment, effect of, 10-15. 

Epileptics, 150. 

Express company employees, in- 
telligence tests of, 275, 276. 

Failures, social and industrial, in- 
telligence tests of, 282-286. 

Feeble-minded, school children, 
119; progress of, 121; number 
of individuals to be classed as, 
124, 127; definition of, 127; 
not curable, 128; grade expect- 
ancy of, 129-131; a burden, 
132; among delinquents, 283, 
284. 

Fifth grade, individual differ- 
ences in, 66-74. 

Finger prints, 5. 

Firemen of San Jose", intelligence 
tests of, 271-274. 

First grade, individual differences 
in, 42-65; critical importance 
of, 42; mental-age differences, 
44; mental age necessary for, 
45-47; sex differences, 55; racial 
and social differences, 55, 56; 
feasibility of testing first-grade 
children, 64, 65. 

Flanders, J. K, 275, 276. 



316 



INDEX 



Galton, Frances, 1, 259. 
Gaylor, G. W., 114. 
Goddard, Dr. H. H., 125. 
Group tests, 312, 313. 
Gulick, Dr., 115. 
Gypsy, Mary, case of, 13. 

Haggerty, M. E., 312. 

Health, rating on, 185-187. 

Heredity, 188-190. See also case 
studies of superior children, 
194-267. 

High School, individual differ- 
ences in first year of, 75-91; 
mental-age differences in, 77- 
79; mental age and school 
marks in, 79, 80. 

Hoboes, intelligence tests of, 282- 
286. 

Hocking, Adeline, 187. 

Hollingworth, H. L., 268. 

Hollingworth, Leta S., 259. 

Home reading, 180, 181. 

Hubbard, Margaret Hopwood, 
165, 166, 168, 

Hubbard, O. S., 66, 175. 

Individual differences, amount 
and significance of, 17-29; 
causes of, in school progress, 
21; among kindergarten chil- 
dren, 30-41; in the first grade, 
42-65; in the fifth grade, 66-74; 
in first year of high school, 75- 
91. 

Intelligence, principles of test- 
ing, 1-15; and other traits, 56- 
61 ; relation to elimination, 86. 

Intelligence quotient, the, 7; a 
basis for prediction, 8-10, 70, 
157; effect of environment 
on, 10-15; distribution of, in 
Kindergarten, 32, 33; in first 
grade, 50; in High-School pu- 
pils, 80; constancy of, 138, 142, 
146; of superior children, 170. 

Intelligence tests in vocational 
and educational guidance, 268- 
290. 

Irwin, May, 265. 



Johnson, Glenn R., 282. 

Key, Dr. Wilhelmme, 125. 

Kindergarten, difference among 
children in, 30-41; sex differ- 
ences, 34; girls superior to boys, 
35, 36; special need of tests in, 
37-39; demand upon intelli- 
gence, 39-41. 

King, Irving, 88. 

Kohs, S. C., 309. 

Laggards, school, 111-134. 
Learning to read, age of, 178. 
Lowery, Howard, 119. 
Lurton, F. E., 113. 

Mead, C. D., 188. 

Mental age, meaning of, 5, 6; a 
basis for school grading, 7, 107; 
overlapping in grades, 25-27, 
80-32; differences in first 
grade, 44-47; differences in 
High-School pupils, 77; and 
school marks, 79, 80, 97; 
standard for grading, 92-110; 
normal age'for different grades, 
93-95; discrepancies with 
school performance, 97-106; 
objections to grading superior 
children by, 262. 

Mental deficiency, criteria of, 
126. 

Mental growth, curves of, 153- 
157. 

Mental test, significance of, 3, 4; 
usefulness of, 109; of school 
laggards, 111-134; sugges- 
tions for use of, 291-313. 

Missing link, the, 4. 

Montessori, Madame, 40. 

Moral traits, 184, 185. 

Morton, W. H. S., 113. 

Only children, 177, 178, 231. 
Opportunity classes for superior 

children, 2GS-266. 
Otis, Arthur S., 308, 312. 
Otis Group Scale, the, 15, 75. 
Over-age children, problem of r 



INDEX 



317 



28, 29, 134; laggards among, 
111, 112, 116; over-promotion 
among, 130, 131; special 
classes for, 131, 132. 

Physical traits, 185-188. 

Play and recreation, 179. 

Poems and fables by seven-year- 
old boy, 204, 205; by boy of 
nine, 244. 

Policeman of San Jose", intelli- 
gence tests of, 271-274. 

Precocity, not pathological, 165. 

Prediction, regarding school 
progress, 36, 61-63, 70; the 
I Q as a basis for, 135-164; the 
essence of science, 135; limita- 
tions of, 137, 148. 

Preston, Isabel, 92, tests made 
by, 98-106; 107, 108. 

Proctor, W. M., studies first 
year High-School pupils, 75, 
76 n. 

Promotion, by age, 27, 28, 97, 
158; of over-age children, 130, 
131. 

Race, Henrietta, 265. 

Recreation, 179, 180. 

Retardation, prevention of, 21, 
28; causes of, 24, 25, 27, 63, 
64; and acceleration, 72; chief 
cause of, 73, 74, 116, 117; 
among school laggards, 1 12; in 
rural schools, 114; supposed 
causes of, 114-116. 

Salesgirls, intelligence tests of, 

277, 278. 
School grading, failure of, 25, 27; 

a model study of, 43-48. 
School success, sources of error 

in judging, 95. 
Sex differences, at kindergarten 

age, 34-36; in first grade, 55. 
Skipping grades, 177. 
Social status, 183. 
Specht, Louise F., 265. 
Special class, the, 131. 



Standard of comparison, neces- 
sity of, 70, 71. 

Standardization of tests, 3, 4, 5, 
50 n. 

Stanford-Binet scale, 1, 2, 5, 10, 
25, 50, 66, 75, 76, 98, 107, 167, 
168; test of fable interpreta- 
tion, 205, 208; Record Book- 
let for use with, 293, 294; ab- 
breviations of, 306-311. 

Strayer, G. D., 87, 112. 

Street-car employees, intelli- 
gence tests of, 277, 278. 

Strong, Dr., Case of Margaret, 
108-110. 

Superior children, some facts 
about, 165-193; educational 
neglect of, 165; case studies of, 
194-267; indications of, 260, 
261; objections to grading by 
mental age, 262; opportunity 
classes for, 263-266. 

Talent, conservation of, 288- 

290. 

Talking, age of, 187, 188. 
Taussig's division of occupation, 

56. 
Terman, Lewis M., 119, 134, 146, 

187, 195, 203, 209, 259, 271, 

291, 297, 309. 
Thorndike, E. L., Educational 

Psychology, 17 n. 
Trait ratings, 181-184. 

Vocabulary test, 808-312. 

Vocational guidance, intelligence 
tests in, 268-290; and educa- 
tional guidance inseparable, 
268; limitations of, 269, 270. 

Vocational training, for back- 
ward children, 132. 

Walking, age of, 187, 188. 
Waugh, C. W., 277. 
Whipple, G. M., 266, 312. 
Williams, Dr. J. H., 144. 

Yerkes, R. M., 312. 



1 07 364